20:52 GMT +314 December 2018
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    Israeli security forces examine the remains of an F-16 Israeli war plane near the village of Harduf, Israel February 10, 2018

    Downing of Israeli F-16 'Strategic Strike Against the Enemy' - Syrian Official

    © REUTERS / Ronen Zvulun
    Middle East
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    Earlier this month Syrian Air Defense Forces launched a strike against an Israeli F-16 fighter in response to the IDF's downing of a UAV, allegedly belonging to Iran.

    The downing of the Israeli F-16 fighter by the Syrian Air Defense Forces shows "an important shift in the rules of engagement imposed by Syria," Speaker of People's Assembly Hammouda Sabbagh said Sunday.

    "The incident is a strategic strike against the enemy," Sabbagh said during a session.

    The official's statement refers to the incident that occurred on February 10, when the Israeli Air Force allegedly downed an Iranian UAV in Syria. Following the incident, Syrian air defenses launched several anti-aircraft missiles against the Israeli F-16 fighter. The plane was destroyed and the pilots ejected, with one of them being seriously wounded.

    The Israeli side responded by attacking 12 positions in Syria, including eight Syrian airplanes and three anti-aircraft batteries. Later on, a military source told Sputnik that the Israeli military believed, it had destroyed up to a half of the Syrian Air Defense Forces during the airstrike.

    Several days after the incident, Syria's Deputy Foreign and Expatriates Minister Fayssal Mikdad said that Damascus would down any jet that launched an assault on Syria.




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