14:59 GMT18 September 2020
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    Turkey will announce in the coming days whether it will hand over a captured Syrian pilot who landed on the Turkish side of the border after ejecting from a crashing military plane to Syria, Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Nurettin Canikli said Sunday.

    ANKARA (Sputnik) — On Saturday, an Islamist coalition called Ahrar al-Sham claimed it shot down a plane, allegedly a MiG-21. Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim confirmed that a Syrian military plane crashed in Turkey's southern Hatay province.

    "The pilot's treatment is continuing right now. A decision would be made after the whole event is clarified, but now it is very fresh," Canikli told reporters, according to the state Anadolu news agency, adding the decision would be made soon.

    Media reports said, citing Turkish sources, that the jet was a MiG-23 fighter rather than a MiG-21.

    Debris of a crashed Syrian fighter jet were found near the Turkish border with Syria, according to the Hatay province governor.

    The news comes amid the nationwide ceasefire in Syria between Damascus and Syrian rebels that came into force on December 30, and has been holding up in general, despite continued reports of violations. The UN Security Council passed a resolution in December supporting the effort.

    Plane crash, MiG-21, MiG-23, Ahrar al-Sham
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