US P-8A Poseidon spy aircraft detected near Russian military base in Syria
Iran Press TV
Monday, 18 May 2020 4:55 PM
Russian air defense forces have reportedly spotted a US military reconnaissance aircraft flying in close proximity to the strategic Hmeimim air base in Syria's western coastal province of Latakia.
The Boeing P-8A Poseidon was on a reconnaissance mission near the coast of Syria, when it was detected, Sputnik news agency said, citing a report by the flight monitoring data website PlaneRadar.
The report added that the military aircraft had taken off from Naval Air Station Sigonella on the Italian island of Sicily in the Mediterranean Sea.
It then flew towards Syria and approached Hmeimim air base. The flight took more than half an hour.
There was no immediate account on the possible reaction of Russian military officials to this report.
The Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement on April 20 that a Russian fighter jet had intercepted a US Navy surveillance aircraft flying near Hmeimim air base.
The statement added that the Russian fighter shadowed the US spy plane and returned to its air base, after the American aircraft changed its course.
"The aircraft of Russia's Aerospace Force have performed and will continue to perform all flights in strict compliance with the international rules of using the airspace over neutral waters," the ministry added.
Russia has been helping Syrian forces in the ongoing anti-terror battles across the conflict-plagued Arab country.
The Russian military assistance, which began in September 2015 at the official request of the Syrian government, has proved effective as Syrians continue to recapture key areas from terrorist groups across the country.
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