Russian military aircraft 'SHOT DOWN' over Mediterranean during assault in Syria

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A Russian military Il-20 plane carrying 14 service members disappeared from radars on Monday night as four Israeli jet fighters were attacking state institutions in Syria's Latakia.

But a US official told CNN: "The US military believes that Syrian [regime] anti-aircraft artillery accidentally shot down a Russian maritime patrol aircraft" while "attempting to shoot down a barrage of Israeli missiles targeting locations in Latakia".

The plane was 35 kilometers off the coast of Syria when it went off the radars, RT quoted the Russian defense ministry as saying. It is unclear if its air defence batteries were also engaged in the defence, or if the aircraft was hit by "friendly fire" from nearby Syrian forces.

Syrian anti-aircraft artillery reportedly responded to a number of Israeli missiles that were launched towards the coastal city of Latakia when it accidentally shot the Russian maritime patrol aircraft, according to a USA military official cited in the report.

Syrian military sources told SANA that the attack came from the direction of the sea and targeted an Organization for Technological Industries center in Latakia.

While the Russian military said it registered four F-16 Israeli jets over Syria at the time of the attack on Latakia, the Israeli military has refused to comment on the report.

A spokesman for the Pentagon told CNN that the missiles were not fired by the US military but would not speak as to who was behind the strikes.

According to the statement radars also recorded the launch of missiles from a French frigate stationed in the Mediterranean.

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"The Syrian response was remarkably ineffective in all domains", US Marine Corps Lt. Gen. Kenneth F. McKenzie said at the time.

The Syrian Arab Army claimed it was a coordinated attack between the Israeli Air Force and British and American ships at sea who fired a total of 28 Tomahawk cruise missiles.

Putin said "radical militants" would have to withdraw from the zone.

It said electricity was later fully restored to Latakia province, a stronghold of Syria's government, after a partial blackout caused by the attack.

The Observatory said at the time that the September 4 attacks were believed aimed at Iranian military posts.

Syria's conflict erupted in 2011 and has since killed more than 360,000 people, with millions more displaced internally and in neighbouring countries.

Israel is alleged to have been behind a series of airstrikes mainly targeting Iranian and Hezbollah forces in Syria that have joined the country's war fighting alongside the government.

Russian Federation intervened in the Syrian conflict to buttress the Assad regime in 2015.

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