Syrian helicopter shot down over Idlib region amid rising tensions between Turkey and Russia
On Friday, A Syrian government helicopter was brought down in a rural area west of Aleppo in Syria’s Idlib district, with clashing claims over who was accountable.
The helicopter was shot down by Turkish-backed rebels stated Turkey’s state-owned Anadolu news agency while Russia’s state-owned Today channel told it was hit by a shoulder-fired missile launch from a Turkish military post close to the town of Dara Azza. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a UK-based war monitor, accused the assault on Turkey.
A radical military source and eyewitnesses revealed to Reuters that Russian planes had been targeting zones in the area of Aleppo earlier on Friday, yet they came back to the city after the helicopter was brought down.
Turkey has taken steps to react firmly to threats to its powers in Idlib despite an administration offensive to recover Syria’s last significant rebel stronghold following nine years of civil war.
Syrian state news organization SANA stated, “Friday’s assault crashed the government helicopter, all the crew members were killed.”
The Syrian government campaign, upheld by Russian airstrikes, has raised strains among Turkey and Russia, which supports some rival groups. The two nations blame each other for neglecting to respect a truce agreement for Idlib and neighboring rebel-held zones that they settled upon in late 2018.
Syrian President Bashar Al Assad’s forces have recaptured notable region since propelling a stepped-up offensive in December, including areas around some of the Turkish military presence set up to observe the cease-fire accord.
Turkey sent many soldiers and substantial weaponry over its borders into Idlib in the previous two weeks, stating it was reinforcing its situation to react to further assaults and implement the cease-fire.
Government forces have concentrated their offensive on the area near a key highway that goes through the opponent territory and connects the nation’s south and north.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has warned the Syrian government recently, saying the offensive breaks a 2018 agreement with Russia intended to prevent an extensive military operation.