Last Updated: Wed Oct 17, 2012 00:23 am (KSA) 21:23 pm (GMT)

FSA captures two pilots after shooting down their plane near Aleppo

One of the captured Syrian air force pilots is seen to bear resemblance to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. (Photo circulated on social media and cannot be verified as true by Al Arabiya)
One of the captured Syrian air force pilots is seen to bear resemblance to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. (Photo circulated on social media and cannot be verified as true by Al Arabiya)

The opposition Free Syrian Army (FSA) captured on Tuesday two pilots of the Syrian air force after shooting down their plane on the outskirts of the commercial hub city of Aleppo, Turkey's state-run Andalou news agency reported.

Bassam al-Dada, the political advisor of the free Syrian army, told Andalou that one of the pilots, a captain, “resembles a lot” Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad.

He explained that the plane was shot down in al-Taana area by basic anti-aircraft weapons normally incapable of downing the plane in the fleet of the Syrian regime.

“The pilots jumped by parachute after their plane was hit, and helicopters of the regime forces flew over their landing site in an attempt to save them and prevent the free Syrian army from approaching them, but the free army managed to capture them,” Bassad said, quoting FSA fighters.

The Syrian regime has lost 61 military aircrafts in its war against the armed Free Syrian Army (FSA), according to the Syrian Revolution General Commission (SRGC).

Many of those aircrafts were shot down when they were bombing residential neighborhoods and flying in low altitudes, the SRGC said, adding that about 53 of the operations were documented with pictures and video.

The army has received the lion’s share in the Syrian budget, and most of that money has gone in weapons purchase deals with Russia.

Of all the aircrafts downed, the FSA destroyed 37 helicopters, and 24 Mig, Sukhoi fighter and training jets.

According to statistics published by the SRGC, 40 aircrafts were shot down, and 21 were destroyed in FSA attacks on military airport bases.

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