MOSCOW – The latest news related to Russian President Vladimir Putin's meeting with top military officials in Moscow. All times local:
Russia's defense minister says the military has received 35 new intercontinental ballistic missiles this year as part of an ambitious arms modernization effort.
Sergei Shoigu said Friday that the military also has received 243 aircraft, 90 air defense systems and 1,172 tanks and other armored vehicles so far this year.
Shoigu, who was speaking during President Vladimir Putin's meeting with top military brass, said that the navy received two new nuclear-powered submarines equipped with intercontinental ballistic missiles, two general-purpose submarines and eight surface warships so far this year.
He said that a steady series of military exercises have helped improve servicemen's skills and contributed to a successful performance of Russian pilots during the ongoing air campaign in Syria.
Russia's defense minister says Russian warplanes have flown a total of 4,000 combat sorties in Syria since the launch of air campaign there.
Sergei Shoigu said Friday Russian aircraft have destroyed 8,000 "terrorist" targets in Syria since the strikes began on Sept. 30.
He added that Russia helped restore a tank repair factory in the Syrian province of Homs, which he said is now working at full scale.
President Vladimir Putin says that a Russian military action in Syria is aimed at protecting Russia from extremists based there.
He said Friday at a meeting with the top military brass that the extremists pose a "clear threat" to Russia. He said fending off that threat is the main goal of the air campaign Russia launched on Sept. 30.
Putin said the Russian military action helped change the situation in Syria, supporting the Syrian army offensive. He said that Russia was also helping some units of the opposition Free Syrian Army, which were fighting "terrorists" in Syria, providing air cover and supplying them with weapons.
Russian President Vladimir Putin says the military should "immediately destroy" any targets threatening its forces in Syria.
He said Friday at a meeting with top military brass that the Russian military base in Syria has been beefed up with additional aircraft and air defense weapons.
The buildup followed the downing of a Russian warplane by a Turkish fighter jet at the Syrian border on Nov. 24. Without naming Turkey, Putin warned anyone against "further provocations," saying the military will respond in "the toughest way."