A Russian fighter jet crashed on Thursday in the Mediterranean Sea after having taken off from a base in Syria, causing the death of the two pilots, the Russian Ministry of Defense was quoted as saying by news agencies.
“A Russian Su-30SM crashed in the Mediterranean Sea at 0945 hours Moscow time (0645 GMT) when it gained altitude after having taken off from the Jmeimim airfield, one of the Russian bases in Syria, the ministry quoted by the Russian public agency TASS
“The two pilots fought until the last minute to (save) the plane,” the ministry said, adding that both died.
According to the Russian army, one of the possible causes of the accident is “the entry of a bird into the engine” of the aircraft, which “was not shot.”
Officially, 86 Russian soldiers have been killed in Syria since September 2015, when Moscow intervened in the war in support of its ally Bashar al-Assad.
Around 3,000 Russian soldiers are in Syria, many of them at the Hmeymim air base in the northwest of the country.