Israeli jets destroy anti-aircraft missile launcher in Syria

17 October, 2017, 00:40 | Author: Brian Mcdaniel
  • Illustrative An IAF F-16 from the Red Dragon squadron during a drill November 2013

Earlier, the SA-5 anti-aircraft battery, located about 30 miles east of Damascus fired at Israeli planes conducting "routine" reconnaissance over Lebanon.

The Israeli Defense Forces confirmed that Israeli Air Force fighters conducted a missile strike against a Syrian base after a missile was sacked at Israeli jets on a routine aerial reconnaissance mission in Lebanese airspace, Russia's news agency Sputnik reports. "Today, they tried to hit our aircraft - we will not accept this", Netanyahu said in a statement. But it was preceded by at least three similar cases over the last two years in which Syria fired anti-aircraft missiles at Israeli planes.

Top photo | Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reaches to one of the first two next-generation F-35 fighter jets after it landed during an unveiling ceremony upon arrival in Nevatim Air Force base near Beersheba, Southern Israel, Dec. 12, 2016.

It's no simple matter to decide on immediate retaliation, all the more so as Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu arrives in Israel.

The added: "The Syrian regime is responsible for any firing from its territory".

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- IDF (@IDFSpokesperson) October 16, 2017In response, IDF aircraft targeted the anti-aircraft battery in Syria.

Moscow intervened in the Syrian conflict in September 2015, and officials from Israel and Russian Federation meet regularly to discuss the deconfliction mechanism system implemented over Syria to prevent accidental clashes between the two militaries. IDF spokesperson Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus said that both the reconnaissance planes and the ones that targeted the anti-aircraft battery "were in the skies over Lebanon, and not in Syria".

The general command warned of the "dangerous repercussions of the repetitive aggressive attempts from Israel", stressing the Syrian army's resolve to continue the fight against the terrorist groups in Syria, naming them "the hand of Israel in the region". Israel's military said it had no intention to escalate the situation further.

The Russian military is allied with Assad and operates extensively in the war-torn country, and so an airstrike against Syrian forces hours before Shoigu lands in Tel Aviv would likely require a more serious consideration and approval process.

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