A month ago, US and Russian military officials signed a memorandum of understanding that included steps their pilots should take to avoid an inadvertent clash over Syria as they carry out separate air strikes against armed groups. That MoU has now been shredded, as it certainly did not involve Russian fighter jets operating above Syria being armed with short and medium range air-to-air missiles as a direct threat to other fighter jets also operating above Syria – mostly those of Turkey, France and the US.
Which is precisely what Russia has done as disclosed in an announcement moments ago by the Russian defense ministry, and furthermore, has released a clip as a warning to not only Turkey, but all NATO forces in the region, that any further provocations at its jets will be met with an immediate and proportional response.
Igor Klimov, spokesman for the Russian Air Force, said that “today, Russian Su-34 fighter-bombers have made their first sortie equipped not only with high explosive aviation bombs and hollow charge bombs, but also with short- and medium-range air-to-air missiles The planes are equipped with missiles for defensive purposes.”
“The missiles have target-seeking devices and are capable of hitting air targets within a 60km radius.”
And the video that was released to commemorate the warning to the “anti-ISIS” alliance: