The Syrian Su-24 strike aircraft were brought down as they were trying to attack Turkish Air Force aircraft.
The Turkish Defense Ministry said in a statement on Mar. 1, 2020 that the Turkish Air Force (TuAF) shot down two Syrian Sukhoi Su-24 (NATO reporting name: Fencer) attack aircraft and destroyed three Syrian air defense systems.
The Su-24s were shot down hours after forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad brought down a Turkish drone over Idlib region, Syria.
In a Twitter post in fact, Turkey’s defence ministry said its forces downed two Su-24 aircraft in response to the downing of the drone.
The Syrian strike aircraft were brought down as they were trying to attack Turkish aircraft, the ministry pointed out, without giving further details. The ministry added that his country bombed Syrian air defense systems after they downed one Turkish armed droned in Idlib.
According to Syria’s SANA news agency, the Su-24 aircraft were shot down over northwestern Idlib province and no one was hurt in the attack. The pilots ejected safely, it added.
As reported by Bloomberg, the fighting in Syria’s Idlib has been escalating since Turkey suffered its biggest single military loss there on Feb. 27, when an airstrike killed at least 33 Turkish soldiers. Turkey made retaliatory strikes against Russian-backed Syrian government forces.
Turkey is fighting to prevent the fall of Idlib, the last rebel bastion in the country, fearing a mass exodus of refugees toward Turkey.
The shoot-downs came as Turkey announced a full-scale military operation named “Spring Shield” against Syrian targets.
Photo credit: SANA
A few things:
Turkish Air Force has no business flying over Syrian territory. Just like Turkish military. Neither was invited to Syria.
Idlib isn’t “falling to Assad forces”, but being LIBERATED BY SYRIAN ARAB ARMY of terrorists which Turkey is supporting and protecting.
Finally: how can Su-24 attack Turkish air force aircraft when it’s only able to carry the close-range R-60 missiles? By now those have long expired, which means Su-24 can’t attack aircraft at all. Using its onboard GSh-6-23 gun for that purpose is useless: it’s not accurate enough for that purpose.
Perhaps it’s time to blow a few F-16s out of the sky to show Turks that they are better off not venturing into the airspace which isn’t their own.
Oops, the Turks used F4s took shoot down those Syrian SUs… No need to fly anything but Vietnam era aircraft!