Syrian, Iranian and Russian forces started a joint military drill, involving heavy military equipment, rocket launchers and warplanes, on October 1, al-Watan newspaper reported on October 2. According to al-Watan, the drills coincided with a series of protests against the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces in northeastern Syria.
Pro-government sources speculate that the military drill is a warning to the US-backed group. During the past few months, several sources claimed that the US-led coalition and the SDF is planning an attack on the Syrian Army on the western bank of the Euphrates.
Russia has successfully tested its advanced S-500 air-defense system in Syria, Russian daily Izvestia reported citing sources in the country’s defense ministry. The report claimed that the tests involved the “most important elements of the S-500.” Izvestia said that the testing allowed to identify “certain problems” that were immediately fixed. A serial production of the S-500 is set to begin in the second half of 2020.