BEIRUT, LEBANON (1:00 P.M.) – Russia will be supplying Syria with the S-300 missile defense system in response to the actions of the Israeli Air Force, which ultimately resulted in the downing of the IL-20 reconnaissance aircraft over the coast of Latakia last Monday, the Russian Minister of Defense Sergei Shoigu said this morning.
“On September 17 Russian surveillance plane IL-20 monitored Idlib province area. At the same time four Israeli F-16 jets were hitting facilities in Latakia province.
Only one minute before the attack Israeli Air Force representatives addressed Russian command via the ‘hot line.’ The exact location of fighter jets had never been provided to us.
It was said, that Israeli Air Force acts on the north of Syria, although facilities in the western part of the country were hit. It prevented us from leading Il-20 to a safe place, it happened to be in the firing line of the Syrian air defence.
Israeli crews, being completely aware of what is going on, used the Russian plane as a cover, which led to hitting it and having 15 Russian military men dead. It forced us to answer with adequate measures meant to protect Russian soldiers, fighting international terror in Syria.
In accordance with the Russian President’s order, the Ministry of Defence will perform the following in order to expand Syrian anti-aircraft missile system:
At first, Syrian forces will receive S-300 modern anti-aircraft weapon system in two weeks.
It can intercept air attack weapons from more than 250 kilometres and hit a number of air targets simultaneously. It is countermeasures-resistant and has high firing rate, so it can increase fighting abilities of Syrian anti-missile systems. I would like to highlight that in 2013 we froze S-300 supply to Syria, which was completely ready for delivery and Syrian soldiers underwent particular training. The situation has changed not because of us.
Secondly, command units of Syrian forces and air defence military bases will be equipped with Distributed Control Systems, which are being supplied to Russian forces only.
It will provide [the units] with the centralised command and control of all the anti-missile systems in Syria, with the ability to monitor air environment and quick target setting. The main thing is that all Russian planes will be able to be identified by Syrian air defence systems for sure.
Thirdly, satellite-based navigation, airborne radars and combat air force communications system taking part in attacking Syrian facilities will be electronically suppressed in the areas of the Mediterranean Sea located close to Syria. We are sure it will fresh ‘hot-brains’ and prevent them from impulsive acts which jeopardise our soldiers safety. Otherwise we would be have to retaliate according to the situation.”
Video credit: Ruptly