Fresh satellite images released on November 9 revealed that Hmeimim airbase in the Syrian coastal governorate of Lattakia is currently hosting 24 aircraft of the Russian Aerospace Forces.
Russian air force at Hmeymim airbase in Latakia with 8 Su-24, 6 Su-34 and 4 Su-35 (22 Oct 2018) pic.twitter.com/qE0FRDUDtG
— Samir (@obretix) November 9, 2018
The aircraft were identified as eight Su-24, six Su-34, four Su-35 warplanes, an A-50 airborne early warning and control (AEW&C) plane, an Il-38 maritime patrol and anti-submarine plane, an IL-20 signal intelligence plane, an Il-76 cargo plane, an An-26 transport plane and an An-74 cargo plane.
Last month, satellite images revealed that Russia forces were building eighteen hardened aircraft shelters (HAS) in Hmeimim airbase in order to provide aicraft with extra protection from rocket and UAV attacks. The new images show that the construction of these shelters is still ongoing.
Between late 2017 and early 2018, Hmeimim airbase hosted more than 40 Russian warplanes, which were supporting the operations against ISIS and other radical groups in Syria. Later, the number started to decline as most areas in the country were stabilized through reconciliation or deconfliction agreements.