UPDATE 9:08 a. m.
EDT of Washington Associated Press: United StatesS.
Defense officials told The Associated Press that Russia has launched air strikes on Syria.
Earlier, Russian lawmakers unanimously voted for President Putin to order airstrikes in Syria. Russia has deployed fighter jets and other weapons in Syria in recent weeks.
MSNBC broadcast live with Tamron Hall, 9/30/15, at 11: 19 a. m.
McCain: It's a very sad day for US senators. John McCain, R-Ariz.
He spoke in the Senate about Russian airstrikes against ISIS in Syria.
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The official, who declined to be named, said they were launched near Homs on Wednesday because the official had no right to discuss the air strikes publicly.
Russia recently moved fighter jets to an air base in the southern Syrian coastal city of Latakia. U. S.
In recent days, officials said Russia was carrying out a reconnaissance mission without dropping bombs to familiarize itself with the area.
This is believed to be a sign that they are about to start air strikes. MOSCOW —
On Wednesday, the Russian parliament unanimously voted for President Putin to send Russian troops to Syria.
The Kremlin tried to downplay the decision, saying it would only use the air force there, not ground troops.
Under the constitution, Putin must ask parliament to approve any use of Russian troops abroad.
The last time he did so was before Russia annexed Ukraine's Crimean peninsula in March 2014.
The Federal Committee of the upper house of the Russian parliament closed on Wednesday to discuss Putin's request for authorization, cutting off its live webcast for a debate known for its speed.
Sergei Ivanov, Putin's head of government, said in a televised speech after the discussion that Parliament voted unanimously to give the green light to Putin's request.
The proposal does not need to be submitted to another legislature.
Ivanov insists Moscow will not send ground troops to Syria and will only use the air force "to support Syrian government forces against Islamic State.
Putin and other officials said Russia only provided weapons and training to Syrian President Bashar AL-ASSAD's army to help it fight ISIS.
However, recent satellite images show that Russia's large military cargo planes and Russian naval carriers in Syria have been traveling back and forth for several weeks to transport troops, weapons and supplies to Syria.
Moscow has always been Assad's top ally.
The Syrian war against his regime, which began in 2011, has killed at least 250,000 people, forcing millions to flee the country.
This is also the driving force for record creation.
Number of asylum victims-
Seekers who fled to Europe this year.
Ivanov told reporters that Russia has decided to help Assad to protect his country from attacks by Islamist militants, not because "our Western partners often blame some of our foreign policy goals or ambitions"
Putin's request for troops came after a meeting with President Obama on Monday during the UN General Assembly in New York to discuss Russia's recent military build in Syria.