INTERNATIONAL > Army: Jet downed by Syria, but not with anti-aircraft fire

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News

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EPA photo

EPA photo

A Turkish jet downed on June 22 was definitely not shot down by anti-aircraft fire as suggested by Syrian officials, the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) said on Friday, while also making clear once more that the jet was shot down by Syria.

“In light of the recent criminal investigations, it has been established that there is no possibility that our fallen jet was shot down by anti-aircraft fire, as had initially been suggested by Syrian authorities,” the TSK said in a written statement posted on its official website.

A July 11 written statement on TSK’s official website had led to confusion, because it had declined to use the term “shot down by Syria” for the first time. It instead referred to: “our plane that Syria claimed to have shot down.” 

With its statement on Friday, the TSK reiterated that the jet was “shot down” by Syria, while, however, noting that how it was shot down by Syria would be established after the entire research was finalized. The TSK, however, did not elaborate on the reason for the changed expression in July 11’s statement. 

“After the significant pieces [of the jet] on the seabed are recovered and their technical examination is finished, it will be possible to find out how our plane was shot down by Syria,” the latest TSK statement read.

“We ask for patience until all our investigations are thoroughly completed, and also for respect to the official statements made by the authorities on the subject of our fallen jet from our most valued public and all press members,” it also said, apparently referring to the debates that ensued following its July 11 statement. 
The currently halted wreck rescue will restart shortly, the TSK noted, without giving a specific date.


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david coors

7/15/2012 4:55:01 AM

The Turkish jet, an American made F4 Phantom of 1960s and a museum piece in military aviation technology, is most likely incapable to defend itself against a Russian made and much more modern missile attack. If it was not downed by Syrian military with Russian made missile attack, it most likely crashed into the sea by itself. It is very unlikely to find its blackbox. Turkish military should disclose the radio communication between its jet and its base if available to prove its claim.

Chris Green

7/14/2012 12:07:51 PM

Quite possible that the pilot 'lost his horizon' and perhaps flying manually at low-level he simply 'went in'! Just as well Turkey didn't react 'knee jerk-style' as the Americans probably would have done n similar circumstances! Assad did not help the confusion though with his expressions of regret etc. More important now though are the ongoing massacres in Syria rather than dwelling on old news!

Falk Bernard

7/14/2012 5:17:04 AM

Rimon, do you mean the one that deliberately attacked a US war ship (USS Liberty) and killed 34 US marines?

Rimon Tree

7/13/2012 10:45:50 PM

NATO has already hinted at not being amused by the possible dishonesty of the Turkish government in the plane affair! They will eventually keep in mind that there is still only one reliable ally in the ME for the West and everybody knows who! Another big success for the foreign policy of the future ottomans!

sam stevens

7/13/2012 8:21:53 PM

Funny how the UK Telegraph is saying this plane was not 'shot down' at all, but it was pilot error.
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