A Russian Aerospace Forces surveillance aircraft was spotted over the at-Tanf garrison in eastern Syria, a senior defense official said.
The An-30 surveillance aircraft repeatedly flew over the at-Tanf garrison in eastern Syria, where U.S. forces train Syrian allies and monitor Islamic State militant activity.
The official said the Russian An-30 aircraft was collecting intelligence on the base.
“They continue to undertake activities that are very concerning to us,” the official said.
The An-30 is a twin-engine, surveillance aircraft designed for intelligence gathering, battlefield surveillance and aerial cartography. Its NATO reporting name is Clank.
The aircraft has a raised cockpit and a special glazed nose with navigation and communication equipment. It is fitted with various cameras and sensors in the fuselage section to accomplish surveillance and photographic missions over a large area.
The Clank is also fitted with a magnetometer and microwave radiometer for long-distance surveillance operations.