Turkish military shot down at least one US Air Force UAV over Idlib
DAMASCUS, (BM) – Two unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) crashed the day before, August 18, in the Syrian province of Idlib. At least one of them turned out to be an American reconnaissance and strike UAV MQ-9 Reaper, learned BulgarianMilitary.com citing EurAsia Daily.
Initially, pro-Turkish militants reported the destruction of a Russian drone in the skies over Idlib using a portable anti-aircraft missile system (MANPADS). However, in the wreckage of the shot down drone, one of the American MQ-9s was identified, which in recent days began to fly in the area much more often, the Military Observer portal notes.
The Pentagon later admitted that the US Air Force “lost two drones over Syria after a mid-air collision.” At the same time, the type of the second UAV is not named.
Despite the statement by the United States of a collision in the air of two drones, which, according to the US military, was the cause of their crash, photos and videos of the defeat of the MQ-9 missile were published on the network. When it fell, it was already on fire. This was also evidenced by an explosion in the air.
According to one version, the Turkish military stationed in the Idlib de-escalation zone could have mistakenly attacked the American drone from the MANPADS.
The situation in the northwest of the Arab Republic continues to escalate. Earlier it became known that the Russian Aerospace Forces struck a blow at the positions of the Islamist alliance “Hayat Tahrir al-Sham” and their allies in the western part of Idlib province.
In the southern sector of the Idlib front – the highlands of Jebel al-Zawiya and the Al-Gab valley – there is a concentration of additional forces by the Syrian army. Several terrorist groups continue to operate in this area at once, including Khuras al-Din and the Islamic Party of Turkestan (banned in the Russian Federation), which is a violation of the Russian-Turkish agreements of March 5 this year.
War in Syria
In February, Turkey lost at least 62 troops killed in Syria, nearly 100 soldiers were wounded, dozens of Turkish armored vehicles were destroyed and more than ten drones, including drone, were shot down. Washington has repeatedly accused Moscow of involvement in the deaths of Turkish soldiers, Russia rejects these allegations.
In early March, the presidents of Russia and Turkey, Vladimir Putin and Recep Tayyip Erdogan, concluded an agreement according to which a ceasefire came into force in the Idlib de-escalation zone.
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad later said that if the US and Turkish military did not leave the country, Damascus would be able to use force.
The reason for the Russian-Turkish negotiations was a sharp aggravation of the situation in Idlib, where in January a large-scale offensive by the Syrian army against the positions of the armed opposition and terrorists began.
Government forces recaptured nearly half of the Idlib de-escalation zone and left behind a number of Turkish observation posts. After that, Ankara sharply increased its military contingent in the region and launched the operation “Spring Shield” to push the Syrian troops. Turkey is also supported by militants loyal to it.
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