On March 4, a Su-22 warplane of the Syrian Arab Air Force (SyAAF) dodged a anti-aircraft missile while conducting a combat sortie over Greater Idlib.
Activists released several photos showing the traces of the Su-22 and the missile that was fired at it. The incident reportedly took place over the town of Sarmin in southern Idlib. Earlier today, Turkish-backed militants launched an attack from there on Saraqib city, to the south.
Су-22 ВВС Сирии осуществил противоракетный маневр и избежал поражения ракетой класса “воздух – воздух” в районе населенного пункта Сармин, мухафаза Идлиб, Сирия. pic.twitter.com/hpOEnFWROH
— SwankyStas (@StasSwanky) March 4, 2020
Turkish sources claimed that the missile which targeted the Su-22 was fired from a Turkish F-16 fighter jet flying over the southern Turkish province of Hatay.
In the last two weeks, Turkish F-16s shot down three warplanes, two Su-24s and a L-39, of the SyAAF using what is believed to be U.S.-made AIM-120 AMRAAM beyond-visual-range air-to-air missiles.
While Turkish sources’ claims are completely possible, there is also a chance that the Su-22 was targeted with a FIM-92 Stinger missile.
Turkish forces in Greater Idlib are known to be using Stinger man-portable air-defense system (MANPADS). The Turkish Armed Forces also deployed several Atilgan pedestal-mounted air defence missile system (PMADS), which are armed with Stinger missiles, in the Syrian region.
The Turkish military is attempting to restrict the operations of the SyAAF over Greater Idlib. This could further complicate the situation in the region.
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