Syria rebel group 'kills Russian general'
Amman: A Syrian rebel group on Wednesday claimed that it had killed a Russian general, who was working as an adviser to Syria's Ministry of Defence on the outskirts of the capital Damascus.
Calling itself the "Hawks Special Operations Battalion...a division of the Military Leadership of Damascus City and Province", the group in a video statement named the general as Vladimir Petrovich Kochyev.
The video, sent to a news agency, showed what the rebels said was a copy of his ID, as issued by the Syrian military.
The same group claimed responsibility for the assassination of four of President Bashar al-Assad's top lieutenants in Damascus last month.
There was no immediate comment from the Russian authorities.
Russia, which has an estimated several hundred military personnel in Syria, is one of the few countries still backing Assad diplomatically since a popular uprising against his rule erupted 17 months ago.