Russian fighter jet Sukhoi_Su-30SM_in_flight_2014

Sukhoi Su-30SM in flight, 2014
Five days after the downing of the Su-25 aircraft by jihadist rebels in Idlib, the Russian Aerospace Forces have switched to using their advanced Su-30 and Su-35 jets in Syria, a military source told Al-Masdar this afternoon.

According to the military source, due to the small number of Su-30 and Su-35 jets in Syria at the moment, the Russian Aerospace Forces have temporarily halted air operations above some parts of the Idlib Governorate.

The purpose of switching to the Su-30 and Su-35 jets is due to their ability to launch airstrikes from high altitudes, putting them out of range from the jihadist anti-aircraft missiles (MANPAD) in the Idlib and Hama governorates.

Most of the Su-30 and Su-35 jets were withdrawn from Syria after Russian President Vladimir Putin's visit to the Hmaymim Military Airport in December; however, they are preparing to bring them back after the downing of the Su-25.