Russia pummels Raqqa

Two US defense officials say Russia has attacked Raqqa, the Islamic State group’s self-declared capital in Syria, with cruise missiles and bombs on Tuesday.

The officials speak on condition of anonymity to discuss non-US military operations. They provide no details on targets or the scale or outcome of the attacks.

One of the officials says the Russians gave the US prior notification of the attacks by communicating with the US-led coalition’s air operations center at al-Udeid air base in Qatar. The official says this was in accordance with protocols worked out by US and Russian officials in October.

Earlier in the day, Russia’s security service said a homemade explosive device brought down a passenger plane over Egypt last month that killed 224 people, calling it a “terrorist” act. The Islamic State group has claimed responsibility for downing the airliner.

— AP

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