Israel downs Iranian drone, strikes Syria; Israeli F-16 goes down, pilots safe

  10 February 2018    Read: 1704
Israel downs Iranian drone, strikes Syria; Israeli F-16 goes down, pilots safe
The Israeli army said Saturday morning that it intercepted an Iranian drone launched from Syria into Israeli territory. In response to the provocation, the IDF attacked Iranian targets in Syria. 

Two Israeli Air Force pilots ejected from their fighter jet during the strike. The plane went down in northern Israel. The two pilots were taken to the hospital in stable condition.

IDF spokesman Ronen Manelis said "We identified an Iranian drone UAV which took off from Syrian territory. The drone was identified by IAF systems and was downed by an IAF helicopter. The Iranian drone fell in our territory and is in our possession."

"As part of the country's defenses, sirens were activated but there was no danger for the residents of Beit She'an. It was decided to attack the trailer from which the Iranians launched the UAV. This was a surgical action deep in Syria, target destroyed."

"This is a serious Iranian attack on Israeli territory. Iran is dragging the region into a situation in which it doesn't know how it will end. We are prepared for a variety of incidents...whoever is responsible for this incident is the one who will pay the price."

Due to Syrian anti-aircraft fire, says the army, red alert sirens sounded in multiple areas of northern Israel, first in the northern Israeli town of Beit She’an and later in the surrounding areas and Golan Heights.

Residents reported hearing many explosions in the last half hour and heavy aerial activity in the area near Israel's borders with Jordan and Syria. 

The Syrian army and rebels in the Syrian Golan Heights are currently exchanging heavy fire.

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