13:10 GMT01 October 2020
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    MOSCOW (Sputnik) - Russia's planned delivery of S-300 air defense systems to Syria will make Israel think twice before attacking the Arab republic once again, Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad said.

    On Monday, Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said that Russia would take a number of measures to boost safety of its troops in Syria, including the deliveries of the S-300 system, in the wake of the Il-20 crash.

    "Israel which got used to carrying out many attacks under different pretexts would have to recalculate and reconsider before attacking again," Mekdad told the Xinhua news agency on Tuesday.

    Mekdad noted that the systems would be only used in case of an attack on Syria.

    He also stressed that the aggression against Syria was an aggression against all forces fighting terrorism in the country.

    On September 17, the Russian Hmeimim air base in Syria lost contact with the crew of the military aircraft, which was monitoring the situation on the ground in Syria's Idlib province. At the same time, four Israeli F-16 jets were hitting Syrian targets in Latakia province. According to Shoigu, Israel had notified the Russian military of its airstrikes only one minute before their start and failed to provide the location of its bombers to Russia. As a result, the Il-20 was caught in the crossfire and downed by a missile launched by Syria's S-200 air defense system.

    Russia has blamed the incident, which claimed the lives of 15 troops, on Israel and said that the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) used the Russian Il-20 as a shield.


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    air defense, S-300, Israel Defense Forces (IDF), Faisal Mekdad, Israel, Russia, Syria
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