US has seen spike in ‘unsafe behavior’ by Russian Air Force in Syria since March 1: CENTCOM

The US has seen a significant spike in 'unsafe behavior' by the Russian Air Force in Syria since early March, a top general said Thursday.

"What we are seeing is an increase recently in the unprofessional and unsafe behavior of the Russian Air Force in the region," Gen. Michael Kurilla, the commander of US Central Command (CENTCOM), told a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing.

Asked by a senator for an example, Kurilla said Russian jets fly over US bases in the region.

"They fly over our bases with ground attack aircraft with weapons on them in an attempt to try to be provocative, but really it's unsafe, unprofessional, not what we expect of a professional air force.

'They want to try to renegotiate the deconfliction protocols that they violate every day,' he added.

Turning to the threat posed by ISIS/Daesh-Khorasan Province, also known as ISIS-K, the commander said the terrorist group is around six months away from carrying out an attack on US and Western interests outside of Afghanistan, where it currently operates.

'It is my commanders' estimate that they can do an external operation against US or Western interests abroad in under six months with little-to-no warning," said Kurilla.

He said it is much harder for the group "to be able to do that against the American homeland.'

Kurilla said attacks could be carried out in Asia or Europe.

Source: Anadolu Agency