Reports: Russia Launches Electronic Warfare in Syria as Tensions Rise

Installs advanced missile system to defend Syria

Vladimir Putin
Russian President Vladimir Putin holds a cat as he inspects housing built for victims of wildfires in the village of Krasnopolye, in Khakassia, a region in southeastern Siberia, Russia / AP

Russia is preparing to begin waging electronic warfare in Syria with the institution of jamming systems that are meant to prevent an incident similar to the attack on Tuesday that brought down a Russian plane in the war-torn region, according to reports by the Russian news media.

Moscow also will install in Syria a highly advanced missile system capable of shooting down aircraft from the ground.

Russia's massive military buildup in the region comes as its forces begin to suffer casualties as a result of the country's efforts to defend President Bashar al-Assad and combat Islamic State militants.

Turkish forces shot down a Russian Su-24 fighter earlier this week for reportedly crossing into the country's airspace while conducting strikes against Islamic State forces in Syria.

The incident has roiled tensions between Russia and Turkey with Vladimir Putin describing the strike as "a stab in the back by the accomplices of terrorism."

Russian Lieutenant-General Evgeny Buzhinsky, in responding to the incident, revealed that Russia will begin using electronic jamming systems that are based both on the ground and installed on special aircraft. The defensive weapons are aimed at stopping a similar attack in the future.

"Regarding the possible impact of this incident on the further developments of the operation in Syria, I think that from now on, our pilots will be more attentive and if the Turks continue behaving in such a manner, Russia will have to resort to electronic jamming and other warfare equipment, including special aircraft with special equipment on board, in order to protect our pilots from being stricken with missiles," Buzhinsky said, according to Sputnik News.

The use of these electronic jamming weapons would confuse Turkish radar and weapons systems, preventing the country from carrying out another strike on Russian aircraft.

Electronic jamming instruments also "will allow Russia to verify exactly where and how the bomber was downed, excluding any possible discrepancies on the issue," according to Buzhinsky.

Turkish authorities maintain that they repeatedly warned the Russian aircraft to leave its territory before it launched an air-to-air missile that brought down the jet.

The implementation of the jamming systems comes amid similar reports that Moscow is gearing up to install an advanced missile defense system at a key Syrian airbase.

The missile system, known as the S-400, will be placed at Syria’s Hmeymim airbase, according to Russia's defense minister.

"By the decision of the supreme commander-in-chief S-400s will be deployed to Hmeymim airbase in Syria to provide comprehensive air defense," Gen. Sergei Shoygu was quoted as saying on Wednesday by Sputnik.

The S-400 system, the latest version of Russia’s advanced surface-to-air missile system, will protect Russian forces stationed at the base, according to Shoygu.

Putin is reportedly on board with this decision, the report claims.

Image via Sputnik

Image via Sputnik