Syria downs Russian military plane during Israeli air strike

19 September, 2018, 22:38 | Author: Donnie King
  • Vaciha Turki Al Omar 30 has been in Idlib for seven months. She on the hill overlooking the sprawling refugee camp with her kids.

Mr De Mistura noted the differing statements by Russia, Syria and Israel about the downing of a Russian reconnaissance aircraft by Syria government anti-aircraft fire which killed all 15 people on board.

The Russian military said the plane was hit 35 kilometers (22 miles) offshore late Monday night as it was returning to the Russian air base in Syria.

"We view the actions of the Israeli military as hostile", Russian Defence Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov told Russian state television this morning.

Turkey will send more troops into Syria's Idlib province after striking a deal with Russian Federation that has averted a government offensive and delighted rebels who said it kept the area out of President Bashar al-Assad's hands.

Arguing that the military manuevers leading up to their plane being shot down were intentional, Konashenkov said the Israelis "deliberately staged this provocation" and accused Israel of creating a risky situation for both aircraft and sea vessels operating in that area. Some of the remains of the crew, along with personal belongings, have been located in the Mediterranean Sea, where the IL-20 came down the search and rescue operation is still underway.

Hmeimim is Russia's main base for air strikes on rebel groups in Syria - strikes that have enabled President Assad's forces to recover much lost ground since 2015. "As a result of the irresponsible actions of the Israeli military, 15 Russian service personnel perished".

Russia, which is allied with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, opposes an all-out assault on Idlib province, because the onus of the campaign's success would fall on them, Lister said.

The Israeli military said earlier on Tuesday that it had no reaction, saying it does not comment on "foreign reports". The Russian Ministry said the meeting was to do with the loss of the Russian plane.

Israel confirms strikes on Syrian territory but insists Syria, Iran and the armed group Hezbollah are to blame for the downing of a Russian jet.

"Israel is determined to stop Iranian military entrenchment in Syria, and the attempts by Iran, which calls for the destruction of Israel, to transfer to Hezbollah lethal weaponry (to be used) against Israel", Netanyahu said, according to his office.

That goal is also obstructed by the presence of USA forces in the quarter of Syria east of the Euphrates that is held by an alliance of Kurdish and Arab militias, and at a base near the borders with Jordan and Iraq.

The Israeli military said in a statement Tuesday that its jets were already within Israeli airspace when the incident occurred.

The Israeli military said that hotline with Russian Federation was in operation and that it would share with Russian Federation all the data at its disposal.

It said the weapons targeted in the Mediterranean coastal city of Latakia "were meant to attack Israel and posed an intolerable threat against it".

Syria and Russian Federation have been preparing military action in Idlib to bring the province under the control of Damascus, but Turkey, which supports some of the armed groups, had called for a ceasefire.

Putin said the decision was to establish by October 15 a demilitarized area 15-20 km (10-12 miles) deep along the contact line between rebel and government fighters.

The deal unveiled by Russian President Vladimir Putin, Assad's most powerful ally, and Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan on Monday will create a new demilitarized zone from which "radical" rebels must withdraw by the middle of next month.

Russian Federation began military strikes in Syria in 2015 after a request from President Assad, who has stayed in power despite seven years of civil war which has so far killed more than 350,000 people.

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