Russia says it will veto a U.N. resolution on humanitarian aid access in Syria, claiming that the draft is an effort to prepare for military strikes against President Bashar al-Assad's regime.
The United Nations Security Council meets amid concerns of military strikes in Syria by the United States and its allies following a suspected chemical weapons attack in Syria last weekend, with the United States ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, accusing Russia of lies and covering for the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, which she said had used chemical weapons at least 50 times in the past seven years of warfare, and the Russian ambassador to the UN, Vassily Nebenzia, blaming the United States, France and the UK for escalating tensions.
Zahran Alloush, founder of Islamist rebel group Jaysh al-Islam (army of Islam), the group's deputy leader, and other officials die in Russian airstrikes on a meeting east of Damascus, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. Jaysh al-Islam was one of the opposition groups at the December 10th conference that agreed on principles to guide peace talks, which both Bashar al-Assad and Russia rejected.
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad says he will not negotiate with armed groups, a day after the Syrian opposition's multi-group, two-day meeting in Riyadh agreed on a framework for future negotiations to end the conflict. Assad's statement also appears to put a damper on peace talks Russia and the United States are working to set up.
Russia expands its military presence in Syria with an additional airbase that can accommodate fixed-winged military aircraft. The U.S. Department of Defense also confirms that Russia added S-400 surface-to-air missiles to its Syrian stockpile and armed its military aircraft with air-to-air missiles. According to Military Times, "A Pentagon spokesman expressed concern" these moves indicate Russia's commitment to aiding the embattled Assad regime as opposed to combating ISIL. No Syrian opposition groups including ISIL have combat-ready aircraft that require air-to-air missiles.
Russia sends antiaircraft missile systems to Syria, where more than 50 Russian aircraft are stationed and its bombing campaign in support of the Assad regime has been in progress since late September.
Russia begins airstrikes against anti-government targets in Syria following a request from President Bashar al-Assad. A U.S. official said the air attack struck near the Syrian city of Homs, where the official said ISIS currently does not have a major presence.
Russian President Vladimir Putin confirms that Russia is providing military aid in Syrian Civil War in support of the Bashar al-Assad regime and is providing heavy weapons, aircraft, tanks, serious training and logistical support to the Syrian Army.
In talks held regarding the course of the Syrian Civil War, Russia and Saudi Arabia fail to reach agreement over cooperation in the fight against ISIL, with the Saudi representative refusing any common struggle with Assad's regime.