Reuters, citing the Russian Defence Ministry, report that a Russian military helicopter carrying five people was shot down in the north of Syria’s rebel-held Idlib province on Monday.
According to the information provided by the Russian Defence Ministry, Russian military personnel on board a helicopter are dead.
They died a “heroic death” on a humanitarian mission, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told a conference call with reporters. He said the helicopter had tried to veer away from inhabited areas to avoid civilian deaths.
The defence ministry said it was an Mi-8 military transport helicopter which had been shot down after delivering humanitarian aid to the city of Aleppo as it made its way back to Russia’s main air base in the western province of Latakia.
Peskov also said that Moscow would continue fighting international terrorism “on all fronts” despite threats from Islamic State.
On Sunday, Islamic State posted a nine-minute video message on YouTube, calling on its members to carry out jihad or holy war in Russia.