BOMBSHELL NEWS FROM THE MIDDLE EAST: Russian warplane shot down by Turkey on the Syrian border, a massive escalation in the region
ANKARA – Turkish fighter jets shot down a Russian-made warplane near the Syrian border on Tuesday after repeatedly warning it over air space violations, Turkish officials said, but Moscow said it could prove the jet had not left Syrian air space.
Turkish presidential sources said the warplane was a Russian-made SU-24. The Turkish military, which did not confirm the plane’s origin, said it had been warned 10 times in the space of five minutes about violating Turkish airspace.
Russia’s defense ministry said one of its fighter jets had been downed in Syria, apparently after coming under fire from the ground, but said it could prove the plane was over Syria for the duration of its flight, Interfax news agency reported.
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan was briefed by the head of the military, while Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu ordered consultations with NATO, the United Nations and related countries, their respective offices said.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group said the warplane crashed in a mountainous area in the northern countryside of Latakia province, where there had been aerial bombardment earlier and where pro-government forces have been battling insurgents on the ground.
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