A Russian military Il-20 aircraft with 14 service members on board went off the radar screens during an Israeli airstrike involving four jets on Syria’s Latakia province late on Monday night, according to Russia's Defense Ministry.

Iran Press- Europe/ Air traffic controllers at the Khmeimim Air Base “lost contact” with the aircraft on Monday evening, during the attack by Israeli F-16 fighter jets on Latakia. The plane was 35 kilometers off the coast of Syria when it vanished from radar screens, RT reported.

Russian radars also registered the launch of missiles from a French frigate in the Mediterranean on the evening of September 17.

Fourteen people were on board the plane at the time of the disappearance. A search and rescue mission is underway in eastern Mediterranean.

The Ilyushin 20 (IL-20) surveillance turboprop plane is an Electronic Intelligence (ELINT) platform, equipped with a wide range of antennas, infrared and optical sensors. The aircraft's SLAR (Side-Looking Airborne Radar) and the plane's satellite link allows the Russian military to monitor Syrian skies in real time.

An hour-long attack on Latakia began around 10 pm local time, and targeted a power station as well as two facilities belonging to the Syrian military. Syrian officials said the attack was “foreign” and came “from the sea,” but could not initially confirm Israel's involvement. Seven people were injured in the attack, according to Syrian officials.

While the Russian military said it recorded four F-16 Israeli fighter jets over Syria's Latakia, the Zionist regime and Israeli military have refused to comment on the report.

As Israel continues to claim the right to intrude into Syria, despite repeated condemnations from Damascus, France has said it will join the US-led campaign to strike Syria again if there are reports of chemical weapons use.

Over the last few weeks, Moscow has been beating drums about the false-flag chemical attack that is being prepared by the notorious White Helmets,  as well as militants and terrorists in Idlib province in order to frame government forces. Such a provocation, the Russian military argues, will be used to trigger a US-led attack on Damascus.

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Earlier, Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on 30 August that consequences of the West’s potential aggression against Syria will be inevitable and this will deal a heavy blow both to the settlement and global stability.


Russian FM Spox warns Western aggression against Syria 

The attack on Latakia came just hours after Russia and Turkey negotiated a partial demilitarization of Idlib province, which is the last remaining stronghold of anti-government militants, including the Al-Qaeda affiliate Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (also known as the Jabhat Al-Nusra).

Recently, Presidents of Russia and Turkey met on 17th September to try to come to an agreement over Syria's Idlib province.

Also on 7 September 2018, Russian President Vladimir Putin along with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan attended a trilateral meeting with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani in Tehran to track the political process of the Syrian crisis, on the eve of the liberation of Idlib as one of the last areas under the control of terrorists in Syria.

During a trilateral summit, the leaders discussed joint efforts as part of the Astana process and political efforts for finding a lasting solution to the Syrian conflict.

The Third summit came as the Syrian army is preparing for an attack on Idlib, the last stronghold of terrorists in the north.

The first of the trilateral summits was held last year in Russia's Black Sea city Sochi on 22 November.

The second trilateral meeting was hosted by Erdogan in April in the Turkish capital Ankara.

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