US shoot down Syrian jet

The US has shot down a Syrian jet. This has escalated tensions between the US and Syria, and between the US and Russia.

Fox News:  Navy jet shoots down Syrian warplane that attacked US-backed rebels

A U.S. Navy fighter jet shot down a Syrian government warplane after it attacked Washington-backed fighters near ISIS’ de facto capital of Raqqa, the U.S.-led coalition said Sunday.

In a statement, the coalition headquarters in Iraq said that a F/A-18E Super Hornet shot down a Syrian Su-22 that had dropped bombs near positions held by the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

The statement said coalition aircraft had “conducted a show of force” to turn back an attack by Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad’s forces on the SDF in the town of Ja’Din, south of Tabqah.

The coalition said the shootdown took place “in accordance with rules of engagement and in collective self-defense of Coalition partnered forces.”

Aljazeera TV (thanks Gezza):

Iran has fiired missiles into Syria, targeting ISIS, who they blame for the recent terrorist attack in Tehran. More details later. Main item is London van attack.

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The US has shot down a Syrian regime jet over Raqqa. They claim it was attacking SDF forces, which they have *advisers* embedded with.

Damascus says it was targeting ISIS.

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Aljaz tv 1 pm.

This incident has infuriated Russia, which has now declared it will treat any coalition aircraft West of the Euphrates as a target !!

The Independent:  Russia to treat US jets in Syria as ‘targets’ after America guns down first regime warplane

Russia has said it will treat US warplanes operating in parts of Syria where its air forces are also present as “targets” amid a diplomatic row caused by the downing of a Syrian jet.

The country’s defence ministry said it would track US-led coalition aircraft with missile systems and military aircraft, but stopped short of saying it would shoot them down.

A hotline set up between Russia and the US to prevent mid-air collisions will also be suspended. Russia’s Defence Ministry said the suspension of its communication line with the Americans would begin immediately.

The US did not use its hotline with Russia ahead of the downing of the Syrian government warplane, said the ministry, which accused the US of a “deliberate failure to make good on its commitments” under the de-confliction deal.

“The shooting down of a Syrian Air Force jet in Syria’s airspace is a cynical violation of Syria’s sovereignty,” the ministry said.

“The US’ repeated combat operations under the guise of ‘combating terrorism’ against the legitimate armed forces of a UN member-country are a flagrant violation of international law and an actual military aggression against the Syrian Arab Republic.”

Downing the jet was akin to “helping the terrorists that the US is fighting against”, Sergei Ryabkov, Russia’s Deputy Foreign Minister, said.

Fox News: US responds to Russian threat after shoot-down of Syrian jet

U.S. pilots operating over Syria won’t hesitate to defend themselves from Russian threats, a Pentagon spokesperson said Monday in the latest escalation between the two superpowers since a U.S. jet shot down a Syrian aircraft on Sunday.

“We do not seek conflict with any party in Syria other than ISIS, but we will not hesitate to defend ourselves or our partners if threatened,” Capt. Jeff Davis told Fox News.

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Joseph Dunford doubled down on that rhetoric during a Monday speech at the National Press Club.

“I’m confident that we are still communicating between our operations center and the Russia federation operations center — and I’m also confident that our forces have the capability to take care of themselves,” Dunford said.

Department of Defense spokesperson Maj. Adrian J.T. Rankine-Galloway said coalition aircraft would continue conducting “operations throughout Syria, targeting ISIS forces and providing air support for Coalition partner forces on the ground.”

It’s hard to see how the Syrian conflict will end well any time soon.

Turkey peace rally bombed, Turkey shoots down Russian jet

Two disturbing news reports from Turkey.

NZ Herald: ‘Turkey’s 9/11’: 86 killed at peace rally

Two bomb blasts ripped through crowds at a rally of peace activists in the Turkish capital on Saturday, killing scores, in a reminder of the growing conflicts Turkey faces both at home and across the border in war-torn Syria.

The explosions in Ankara, which occurred just minutes and yards apart, killed 86 people and injured 186 more as they gathered to call for an end to the violence that has flared between Turkish security forces and Kurdish separatists in recent months.

And after Russia had already admitted to flying over Turkish airspace earlier this week:

Russia says Turkish airspace violation ‘a mistake,’ Turkish media report

(October 5)

Turkey said it intercepted a Russian jet that violated its airspace over the weekend.

The country called in the Russian ambassador and lodged a strong condemnation of the violation, Turkey’s foreign ministry said in a statement Monday.

“The Russian aircraft exited Turkish airspace into Syria after it was intercepted by two F-16s from the Turkish air force, which were conducting patrols in the region.”

A spokesman for Russia’s defense ministry dismissed any idea that the incident was anything nefarious, stating flight patterns that change “under certain weather conditions” might help explain what happened.

“This current incident is a result of bad weather conditions in this region,” spokesman Igor Konashenkov told reporters. “You shouldn’t look for conspiracy theories.”

Today there are reports that Turkey has shot down a Russian jet.

Russian Jet ‘Shot Down By Turkish Forces After Plane Violated Country’s Airspace’

Turkish forces are said to have shot down a Russian jet after it reportedly flew into the country’s airspace.

It has been reported by eyewitnesses that there was a large explosion in the town of Huraytan, northern Syria.

The Russians – who have announced plans to increase the number of strikes against ISIS targets – have also clashed with Turkey, after one of their bombers violated Turkish airspace.

But neither side has yet said whether rumours of another of Russia’s planes was shot down in a separate confrontation.

This adds to the tensions surrounding Syria and the Middle East.