Syria Daily: Regime Pilot “My Jet Was Shot Down” — Turkish Media


Regime pilot in hospital after ejection as MiG-21 crashed on Turkish territory on Saturday


An Assad regime pilot who ejected as his MiG-21 warplane crashed near the Turkish-Syrian border said that his jet had been shot down, according to Turkish media.

Colonel Mehmet Sufhan was rescued on Saturday after a nine-hour search in Hatay Province in southeastern Turkey. He has fractures in his spine but is not in critical condition, according to hospital staff.

Sufhan reportedly told Turkish authorities that the MiG-21 was downed while it was en route to bomb opposition areas in Idlib Province in northwest Syria.

Pro-rebel activists said that the plane was hit by machine gun fire from the leading faction Ahrar al-Sham, but pro-Assad outlets and some pro-opposition activists said the MiG-21 suffered technical problems.

Syrian State TV, quoting an army source, said only that the air force had lost contact with a fighter jet on a mission near the Turkish border.

Deputy Prime Minister Nurettin Canikli said Ankara will decide whether to return the pilot “once the situation gains clarity…after it is determined why and how the jet crashed in Turkish territory, how the pilot jumped, and on what duty he was serving”.

Pro-Assad warplanes have been bombing across Syria, including Idlib Province, despite a nominal ceasefire declared by Russia, Turkey, and Iran at the end of December.

Attacks early Sunday killed at least six civilians, including two children, in Kafrnabel in Idlib Province, according to the Syrian Network for Human Rights.

TOP PHOTO: Wreckage of a crashed regime MiG-21 jet in southeastern Turkey on Saturday

Video: US Special Forces Assisting Kurdish-Led SDF near Manbij

Footage of US special forces supporting the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces in Manbij in Aleppo Province:

In recent weeks, the US has moved in more armor to bolster the SDF — backed by the US since late 2015 to push back the Islamic State in northern Syria — as the Kurdish-led force has faced the advance of a Turkish-rebel offensive.

Russia has also provided assistance, with a deal reportedly struck between the SDF and the Assad regime to secure the villages west of Manbij.

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  1. Name, rank and serial number, that is all that can be gotten out of the superbly trained SAA personnel fallen into enemy hands.
    All the rest is a farrago of Turk lies.
    [/impression of Ziad Abou Fadel]

    • This is not good for the opposition and is clearly self-defeating. It is the age-old phenomena that when a movement falters, the extremists rise to the top claiming that their way will save the movement at the last moment. Some will be convinced by them and some others will just fade away. It has all the hallmarks of a last gasp. I just hope we do not witness the carnage that we have seen elsewhere happen in Idlib.
      Surely they are making it even more difficult for the US to back the opposition. And they will curry no favor with Saudi Arabia. Erdogan may initially give them some attention, but only enough for him to achieve his other goals. Look at the silver lining. Once these Islamists lose their enclave, and ISIS is booted, it may put an end to Sunni Islamism in Syria and Iraq, as their shine will be gone and people will start questioning Islamism. Sunni radical Islamism will have to suffer all over the middle east upon the demise of this movement. What will come to compete with it is anybody’s guess.

      • What will come to compete with it is anybody’s guess.” — No, it is already clear that there will be no further competition … Sunni Muslim Brothers will recognise the error of their ways and get on the winning team by converting en masse to Shi’ite Majoosi Rafidahism, which thanks to the wise leadership of Darth Soleimani will then sweep across the Arabian Peninsula, lynching all the oily puppet ‘Kings’ standing between IRGC and the liberation of Al Quds.

  2. #Observation: The regime right now is busy with 3 major offensives – 1) Damascus area. 2) East Aleppo area. 3) Palmyra. Therefore regime right now doesn’t have the resources to take the fight to rebel units in Deraa (and possibly Hama?) and is relying entirely on airpower to stop rebel offensives there.
    So it follows that now is the time for rebels in Deraa and Hama to ramp up but they/rebels should do much of their fighting during night-time (and as well as adopting more mobile warfare approach) when there is fewer Russian/regime jets and at multiple locations. For rebels in Hama the town of Suqaylabiyah/Morek as well as mobile warfare operations around Salamiyah area (in particular depots and check-points) should obviously be their targets but as for rebels in Deraa the two locations they should be targeting is Ataman (to infiltrate with rebel sleeper cells?) as well as Elmah (a village just to the east of Khirbet Al-Ghazalah) whilst rebels inside Deraa continue their fight? Why? Rebels surround Elmah from their areas in the north, east and the south of Elmah from where rebels can launch a quick night-time multi-axis (ie from more then one direction: north/east/south) offensive against that town (and might I add ideal for VBIEDs attacking under the cover of drone-guided mortar shelling) whilst rebels are also simultaneously blockading the roads around Khirbet Ghazaleh. Furthermore, even if rebels don’t capture Elmah it will at least force regime to send troops to defend Elmah from other areas rather then re-enforcing their positions in Deraa city that rebels are now attacking and thereby give rebels more time to capture more of Deraa. And IF rebels do capture and hold Elmah for long that village/town can be used as base to launch a future assault on Khirbet Ghazaleh.
    As for the place of Elmah – the area of that village/town is smaller then Fua/Kafraya and has the potential to be capture in a quick surprise night-time offensive on multiple fronts if such an offensive can be organised.

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