07:58 GMT +319 January 2020
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    Russian Il-20 Military Plane Shot Down Over Syria (35)

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The US Navy 6th Fleet is informed about the deadly crash of the Russian Il-20 in the Mediterranean near Syria and is ready to provide assistance at sea to any country if needed, the 6th Fleet's public affairs officer, Cmdr. Kyle Raines, told Sputnik.

    "We are aware of the reporting on the loss of a Russian military aircraft. Our ships stand ready to assist any nation when called upon to render assistance at sea, which is a fundamental element of responsible mariners," Raines said on Wednesday.

    Raines, however, did not say if the Russian Defense Ministry had requested the assistance of the US in relation to the incident.

    Russia's Hmeymim Airbase lost contact with the Il-20 military aircraft late on Monday when four Israeli F-16 jets attacked Syrian targets in Latakia province. All 15 servicemen on board the plane were killed when it was accidentally struck with Syria friendly fire.

    The Russian Defense Ministry said on Tuesday that a search and rescue operation involving eight Russian vessels, had been launched following the aircraft crash.

    READ MORE: Israeli Delegation to Travel to Moscow to Share Information on Il-20 Plane Crash

    The ministry blamed the Israeli forces for the deadly incident, pointing out that the Israeli military had deliberately created a dangerous situation by using the Russian aircraft as a shield against Syrian air defense systems.

    Russian Il-20 Military Plane Shot Down Over Syria (35)


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