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Russia Begins Decoding Flight Recorder of Warplane Downed by Turkey
   2015-12-18 20:23:40    Xinhua      Web Editor: Guan Chao

A file photo shows a Russian Sukhoi Su-24 fighter jet takes off from the Hmeymim air base near Latakia, Syria. [Photo: Xinhua]

Russia has begun decoding the flight recorder of the Su-24 jet that was downed by Turkey near the Syrian-Turkish border, with the first set of data expected to be released on Monday, the country's Defense Ministry said Friday.

An F-16 fighter of the Turkish Air Force shot down the Su-24 on Nov. 24 for allegedly violating Turkish air space. Russia claimed the jet did not cross into Turkey.

The flight recorder was opened in a laboratory with the presence of experts from Russia, China and Britain. Although the Defense Ministry has invited 14 countries to participate in the investigation, many of them refused to join in.

Journalists could watch live pictures of the process in the hall of the Interstate Aviation Committee, a supervising body overseeing the management of civil aviation in the Commonwealth of Independent States.

The black box recorded the last 40 minutes of the flight, but three of the eight chips from the flight recorder have been damaged and will need to be x-rayed, Andrei Semenov, head of Russian military's information and analytic department, told reporters.

The Defense Ministry promised that further work on deciphering the flight recorder will be continued with the presence of international observers.

Russia claims that it has proof confirming that the Russian jet did not violate Turkish air space and posed no threat to the country, Russian Aerospace Forces Deputy Commander Sergei Dronov told a news briefing.

"The information we have provided concerning the situation in the area has not been refuted by anyone, including Turkey," claimed the officer.

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