File photo: Syrian Arab Air Force Mikoyan MiG-29SM multirole fighter aircraft
According to Aljazeera:
An air strike by Syrian government forces has killed a senior commander of the Syrian branch of al-Qaeda, al-Nusra Front, Syrian state media has reported.
SANA state news agency said Abu Hammam al-Shami, also known as al-Farouq al-Suri, was killed in a special army operation in Idlib province on Thursday.
Al-Shami, a veteran al-Qaeda leader from Damascus, held the title of general military commander for al-Nusra Front.
Pentagon spokesman, Colonel Steve Warren, said: "We cannot confirm press reports of the deaths of senior al-Nusra leaders near the province of Idlib."
However, he added: "Neither the US or the coalition have conducted air strikes near that location in recent days."COMMENTARY: According to Nusra Front, three other military leaders were KIA in the airstrike, including Abu Musab Falastini, Abu Omar Kurdi, and Abu Baraa Ansari.
If the airstrike was indeed carried out by SyAAF (Syrian Arab Air Force), it would serve to provide a boost to Syrian Arab Republic armed forces, as well as the Iran-led coaltion against ISIL and Al-Qaeda linked forces that includes Nusra Front.
Some social media sources claim the airstrike was carried out by SyAAF Mikoyan MiG-29 aircraft. If true, it may have been the SyAAF Mikoyan MiG-29SM, a type known to carry an expanded arsenal of air-to-ground weaponry, including Kh-29T/TE (AS-14 'Kedge') and Kh-31A/P (AS-17 'Krypton') missiles and KAB-500KR guided bombs. [source: IHS Jane's]