Three days after ISIS gunmen and bombers killed at least 129 people in Paris, Russia and France forged a military coalition against the common enemy and pounded Islamic State (IS) posts in Syria.
This is probably for the first time since World War II that the two powers came together. The strikes in Syria came hours after Putin and his French counterpart, Francois Hollande, agreed to step up cooperation between their military and intelligence services. The decision came just after Russia acknowledged that the Russian charter jet which had crashed in Egypt two weeks ago was brought down by a blast, ostensibly engineered by ISIS.
French President Francois Hollande had appealed to Washington and Moscow to join a “grand coalition” to fight IS to dislodge them from swathes of Syria and Iraq.
The cooperation between Russia and France is set to extend to the Mediterranean, as Russian President Vladimir Putin instructed his troops to treat the French “as allies and work out a plan of joint actions both at sea and in the air” once Paris decided to deploy its aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle in the Mediterranean.