A U.S. F-15 fighter aircraft shot down an Iranian-made drone over southern Syria on Tuesday, the Defense Department said, marking the fifth time the US has attacked pro-Syrian government assets within a month.
The US has about 1,000 military personnel in northern Syria, where it has been supplying and supporting partnered forces in their fight in the ISIS-stronghold of Raqqa.
The Pentagon said the incident took place near a combat post in A-Tanf where US and coalition "advisers" are stationed in a support capacity to provide services to forces battling the Islamic State terrorist organization.
The SU-22 fighter bomber was engaged by an F/A-18E Super Hornet after it had dropped bombs near the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces, the Pentagon said.
The Russians also said they suspended their hotline that the American and Russian militaries used to prevent collisions of their aircraft in Syrian airspace.
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The broadcaster said that the Russians added that any coalition craft flying west of the Euphrates River would be tracked and "considered air targets".
The Democratic Senator also said that the USA president had no authority to act on his own to engage in a war in Syria and that he must gain permission from Congress. The coalition shot down Iranian-made Shahed-129, belonging to the Syrian #Air Force, near the At-Tanf area, the channel said.
The latest incident occurred in a part of Syria seen as strategically important for the Syrian government and Iran as Tehran seeks to secure a land corridor between forces it backs in Syria and Iraq.
The Pentagon said that pro-government militiamen had attacked SDF units, driving them from the town of Ja'Din. One of the officials said that UAV "was assessed as a threat".
"Hostile intent and actions of pro-regime forces toward coalition and partner forces in Syria conducting legitimate counter-ISIS (Daesh) operations will not be tolerated", the coalition statement read.
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"Any flying objects, including planes and drones of the global coalition, discovered west of the Euphrates River will be tracked as aerial targets by Russia's air defences on and above ground", said Russia's defence ministry. The Syrian situation could escalate quickly into a hot war if Russian Federation shoots down a U.S. military plane.
Meanwhile, the US and Russian militaries swapped accusations about an unsafe intercept involving a USA spy plane and a Russian fighter jet over the Baltic Sea.
It was shot down near Tanf, an outpost of the US-led coalition.
"It is in use to make sure that... our air crews and ground forces are safe", he said.
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