Turkish fighter jets harassed by Syrian missile systems

Photo: Turkish fighter jets harassed by Syrian missile systems / Turkey

Missile lock-on systems deployed in Syria harassed five Turkish F-16 fighter jets on Tuesday, the second such incident since a Syrian warplane was shot down by F-16 pilots on Sunday after violating Turkey's airspace, according to a statement from Turkish Military headquarters on Tuesday, Anadolu Agency reported.

The incident occurred when the five Turkish Air Force jets were patrolling the Turkey-Syria border and four Syrian jets approached Turkey's airspace. The Syrian fighter jets left the area without violating Turkish airspace.

Meantime, Syrian ground missile lock-on systems tracked the Turkish jets twelve times for ten minutes as they flew over Turkey's southern Hatay province, added the statement.

Missile lock-on is the guidance system for a missile that can accurately track a target, and a fire-control system that can calculate the required flight path for the missile to intercept the target.

In Sunday's incident, a Syrian fighter jet was shot down near the northwestern Syrian town of Kasab as clashes along the Turkish-Syrian border intensified.

A statement from the Turkish Foreign Ministry on Monday underlined that the Syrian regime did not adhere to the Turkey-Syria border commission meetings protocol, signed May 9, 1971, which bans aircrafts from either side getting any closer than five kilometers to their shared border.

Meanwhile, a statement from the Russian Foreign Ministry urged Syria and Turkey to show restraint and not let the situation escalate.

Back in 2012 Syria shot down a Turkish warplane after it reportedly violated Syrian airspace and killed two pilots.

Turkey shot down a Syrian MI-17 attack helicopter last September, saying it made a 2-km incursion into its airspace.

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