Russia threatens to shoot down US aircraft

Moscow threatens coalition aircraft in Syria after US fighter shoots down Syrian plane.

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Gary Willig,

Navy F-18 Super Hornet
Navy F-18 Super Hornet
iStock

Russia threatened to retaliate against US aircraft following reports that a US Navy fighter plane shot down a Syrian fighter which had bombed US-backed rebels, the New York Post reported.

“Any aircraft, including the international coalition’s planes and drones, discovered west of the Euphrates River, will be accompanied by ground and air-based anti-aircraft defenses as aerial targets,” Moscow said in a statement Monday.

The US had stated that its F-18 Super Hornet fighter had acted in “collective self-defense” when it shot down a Syrian SU-22 that had attacked a site near Tabqa occupied by members of the Syrian Democratic Forces yesterday.

Russia, which supports the government of Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad militarily, called the downing of the Syrian plane an "act of aggression" and a violation of international law.

“This, if you like, is help for the terrorists that the US is fighting under what they call their anti-terrorism policy,” said Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov.