A Russian military helicopter has been shot down by rebels in Syria’s Idlib Province killing all five crew members on board according to the Russian Defense Ministry.
The ministry said that chopper was shot down after delivering humanitarian aid to the city of Aleppo and as it was making its way back to Russia’s main air base in Syria.
The BBC reports:
The Mi-8 transporter came down in Idlib province. It was carrying three crew and two officers, Russia’s defence ministry said.
The helicopter was returning from delivering humanitarian aid to the besieged city of Aleppo, it said.
It is not clear which group brought the helicopter down.
An alliance of rebel groups, including hardline jihadist factions, is the dominant power in Idlib.
Russia has previously, though seldom, lost aircraft since it launched operations in support of the Syrian government at the end of September 2016.
This is not the first time a Russian helicopter has been downed. In July, two Russian pilots were killed when their chopper was shot down east of the city of Palmyra by ISIS.
An Interfax news agency report claimed that that ISIS had used an American made TOW anti-tank missile to shoot it down.