Israeli Air Force (IAF) fighters used a civilian plane that was landing at the Damascus airport as a shield in order to evade the Syrian air defense systems during a missile strike on Syria, said Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Igor Konashenkov on February 7.
On Thursday to Friday night, IAF launched an attack on military and civilian targets near Damascus firing air-to-surface missiles from outside of Syrian airspace.
At the time of the strike, an Airbus A320 with 172 passengers on board flying from Tehran to Damascus was about to land at Damascus International Airport when the Syrian air defense systems engaged the hostile targets.
The civilian aircraft was safely redirected from the danger zone thanks to a quick reaction of air traffic controllers and timely made decisions by the automated air traffic control system.
Considering the situation in the Syrian sky, the Russian air base command in Hmeymim quickly allowed an emergency landing of an Airbus-320. The plane landed safely, no one was injured.
Russian Defense Ministry also noted that such incidents are not a coincidence, they are planned in the operational headquarters in advance and became an established pattern of the IAF.
On September 17, 2018, Russian Il-20 reconnaissance plane with 15 servicemen onboard was accidentally shot down by the Syrian air defenses during an IAF missile attack.
The tragic incident took place as a result of a deliberate maneuver of an IAF fighter which used a Russian plane as a shield making it a subject to an attack by the Syrian air defense. This led to the deaths of all Russian Aerospace Force (RAF) Il-20 servicemen on board.
Source: Rossa Primavera News Agency