Russian SU-34 bomber
A Russian SU-34 bomberGetty Images

Russia is sending bombers into the air over Syria armed with air-to-air missiles, after a Russian warplane was shot down by a Turkish jet for allegedly straying into Turkish airspace.

Russian Aerospace Forces spokesman Colonel Igor Klimov said that Russian SU-34 fighter-bombers would not just carry AFAB-500 aerial bombs and KAB-500 guided bombs, but also "short and medium range air-to-air missiles".

The missiles "are equipped with homing devices and are capable of hitting aerial targets at a distance of 60km (37.2 miles)," said Klimov.

On 29 November, Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said that the body of a pilot, who is believed to have been killed by a Syrian rebel group after parachuting from the plane, had been given to Turkish authorities. He has ruled out apologising for the incident, as the diplomatic dispute between the countries intensified.

Russia responded to the downing of the Russian SU-24 jet on 24 November with economic sanctions, and accusations that Turkish officials back jihadist group Islamic State (Isis). The Kremlin claims that the jet did not stray into Syrian airspace, and the one pilot who survived said it did not receive any warnings before being shot down.

The Turkish military has released an audio recording of what it claims is the warning being issued to the fighter jet.

Russia deployed the S-400 missile defence system to Syria in the wake of the incident.