Tag Archives: Syria

Assad deploys Syrian Air Force Sukhoi Su-24 Fencer attack planes to hit rebels hard

Located between Aleppo and Idlib, Taftanaz is a major airbase in the northwest of Syria used to launch fighter jets and helicopter gunships against the rebel positions.

A fierce fighting is currently taking place at Taftanaz to liberate the key airfield, an assault that loyalists are trying to counter with Su-24 Fencer attack planes.

The Russian Sukhoi of the Syrian Arab Air Force can be seen jinking a bit during a medium/high level attack with four free fall dumb bombs released at the same time.

Believed to be based at Tiyas with the 819 Squadron, the 20 Su-24 Fencer bombers reportedly in service with the SyAAF are among the most deadly aircraft in the hands of Assad.

They were rarely seen so far, most probably to prevent them from being downed by the rebels (or because they mainly operated at high altitude).

Syria refuses its Mig-21 back unless the pilot comes with it

Jordanian news website Ammonnews, has reported that “Syria has informed Jordan that it either returns the Mig-21 fighter jet and the pilot, or doesn’t want the “abducted” plane, it would stay in Jordan”. The report went on to state that Jordanian authorities have granted the pilot, Colonel Hassan Hamada, political asylum on the basis of the Geneva Convention.

The Pilot had defected on Jun. 21, whilst on a training exercise. Although many media outlets used and still use the image below to show the defecting plane, the photo, literally grabbed by one the major news agencies on a popular aviation forum, actually depicts an Egyptian Mig-21 and not a Syrian Arab Air Force one.

Anyway it is looking like the Mig will stay in Jordan for the foreseeable future.

Richard Clements for TheAviationist.com


Video of Su-22 releasing flares during attack shows Syrian pilots are becoming concerned of surface to air missiles

Reportedly filmed on Oct. 20 at Maarat Al-Nouman, Idlib, where Syrian Arab Air Force planes have been concentrating their missions lately, the following video shows a Su-22M-4K involved in a bombing run against the Free Syrian Army units that have taken control of the main road to Aleppo cutting off Assad supply route.

Noteworthy, the Syrian attack plane releases several flares, aerial infrared countermeasures made of a composition based on hot-burning metal used to counter heat seeking surface-to-air missiles: flares generate temperatures equal to or hotter than engine exhaust attracting the missile’s seeker head.

Many videos from Syria have shown Assad warplanes flying over Damascus and other Syrian towns without worrying too much about MANPADS (Man Portable Air Defense Systems).

SA-7 Grail (or Strela-2) and one those reportedly in the hands of the FSA could have downed the Mil Mi-8/18 Hip gunship filmed exploding mid-air after being hit near Idlib few days ago.

H/T to @hlk01 for the heads-up

[Map] Syrian planes and helicopters downed by rebels since the beginning of the uprising

Studying all the information gathered from both verified and unverified sources, Bjørn Holst Jespersen has created an interesting map which shows all the locations where Syrian Arab Air Force planes or helicopters have been shot down during the uprising, beginning in early 2011.

The map is constantly updated, with the help of several contributors.

Syrian airliner forced to land in Turkey had radios, antennae, missile parts and ammunition on board

The Syrian Air Airbus 320 that was forced to land near Ankara, in Turkey on Wednesday Oct. 10 by Turkish Air Force F-16s was carrying ammunition. Probably.

Hurriyet daily news has quoted Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan as saying “A Russian arms exporting agency was the sender and the receiver was the Syrian Defense Ministry. The material has been confiscated and is being examined”

Erdogan went on to say “Carrying such materials through our airspace is against international rules.”

The Guardian Newspaper put a little more detail on what ammunition was found on the jet, the Turkish authorities found radios, antennae and what is thought to be missile parts along with normal ammunition. Syria has condemned the action by Turkey and branded it ‘Piracy’ and said that the passengers were in “a very bad psychological state” after their nine-hour stay in Turkey.

The Guardian quoted Rosoboronexport spokesman Vyacheslav Davidenko as saying “We had no cargo on that aeroplane, we always deliver our weapons in full compliance with international norms. Sending weapons on a passenger aeroplane breaks about every law there is.”

There is no actual arms embargo on Syria mainly due to objections by Russia and China at the UN. Russia in particular has attempted to deliver renovated helicopters on several occasions with one shipment turned back whilst off the coast of Scotland during the summer.

The Guardian has also quoted Ruslan Aliyev who is an analyst at the Center for Analysis of Strategies and Technologies, a Moscow based consultancy who said: “Russia is not interested in escalating the conflict in Syria. Secretly delivering weapons to Syria would put at risk Russia’s image and reputation and (Vladimir) Putin’s personal reputation. No Russian leader would go on such a risky venture.”

Further details of this incident will be forthcoming, The Aviationist will report them when they come to light.

Richard Clements for TheAviationist.com

Image credit: AP