Russian passenger plane attacked over Syria


President Vladimir Putin (L) and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov meet Russian Ambassadors in the Foreign Ministry, in Moscow, on July 9, 2012. Putin said Syria needed a dialogue between the regime and opposition forces to ensure a lasting peace.


Alexander Nemenov

Two missiles were fired at a Russian plane carrying at least 159 passengers as it flew over Syrian territory,  the Interfax News Agency reported. The pilots were able to move the plane in time to avoid injuries. 

The INA got the information from an anonymous source who believes the plane was intentionally targeted.  “Syrian [officials] informed us that on Monday morning, unidentified forces launched two ground-to-air missiles which exploded in the air very close to a civilian aircraft belonging to a Russian airline,” the source said. 

More from GlobalPost: Inside Syria

"It remains unclear whether the attackers knew it was Russian or not."

The plane belonged Nordwind Airlines. It was traveling from the city of Kazan to a resort city in Egypt,  RT News reported.

A  statement  on the Russian tourism ministry's website additionally admits that there were "signs of war activity which, in the crew's opinion, threatened the safety of the plane."

The near-miss comes the same day that Syria's prime minister  survived a bomb attack  on his convoy in Damascus.