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U.S. shoots down Syrian jet for the first time in civil war

19 June 2017

Moscow views the US-led coalition's attack on the Syrian government military jet as an act of aggression and assistance for the terrorists that the United States is fighting against, according to Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Ryabkov.

WASHINGTON — The U.S. military on Sunday shot down a Syrian Air Force fighter jet that bombed local forces aligned with the Americans in the fight against Islamic State militants, an action that appeared to mark a new escalation of the conflict.

Syria condemned what it called a "flagrant attack" that would have "dangerous repercussions".

USA -backed Syrian militias accused the Syrian government on Monday of bombing their positions southwest of Raqqa city in recent days and threatened to retaliate if the attacks continue.

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The Pentagon says the coalition's mission in Syria and Iraq is to defeat Islamic State.

The Syrian army issued a statement on state television claiming its pilot is missing.

A US Navy F-18 flying off of the USS George H.W. Bush shot down a Russian made Syrian SU-22 over the skies of Raqqa after President Bashar Assad's air force attacked US backed forces attacking ISIS.

"Following the Pro-Syrian forces attack, the coalition contacted its Russian counterparts by telephone via an established "de-confliction line" to de-escalate the situation and stop the firing", the statement said.

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"Any aircraft, including planes and drones of the global coalition, detected in the operation areas west of the Euphrates River by the Russian air forces will be followed by Russian ground-based air defense and air defense aircraft as air targets", Russia's defense ministry declared.

The U.S. -led coalition said in a statement that its focus is on fighting ISIS, and not fighting the Syrian regime or Russian forces, but it will not hesitate to defend coalition or partner forces coming under attack. But the USA military said it would defend US -backed forces when necessary. Attempts to warn the Syrian plane away from the area using an emergency radio frequency failed, said Col.

In a separate incident on Sunday, Iran's Revolutionary Guards said they had launched several missiles from Iran into eastern Syria, targeting IS fighters.

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U.S. shoots down Syrian jet for the first time in civil war