Israeli airforce chief to present findings of Syria incident - Israeli military

Evarado Alatorre
Setiembre 22, 2018

-General Igor Konashenkov, chief spokesman of the Russian Federation Ministry of Defense, in a video statement.

The Russian military claimed that Israeli pilots had attacked Syrian targets by using "the Russian plane as a cover, exposing it to fire from Syrian air defences".

Putin said that, at Erdogan's suggestion, by October 10, all opposition heavy weapons, mortars, tanks, rocket systems would also be removed from the demilitarised zone. Russian Federation has said Syria shot the plane down shortly after Israeli jets hit the area, and accused Israel of creating the risky conditions by failing to give sufficient advance notice.

Many of those terror groups have the backing of Israel and its allies in their bid to topple the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said Thursday further investigation is needed to establish what happened and Russia is awaiting information from the Israeli side.

Israel has mainly struck Iranian targets in Syria and weapon convoys en route to Hezbollah in Lebanon.

"These weapons were meant to attack Israel, and posed an intolerable threat against it", it stressed.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo issued a statement expressing sorrow for the incident, which killed 15 Russian servicemen.

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According to Israeli Intelligence Minister Yisrael Katz, the regime has taken military action within Syria more than 200 times in the last two years alone.

Although Russian President Vladimir Putin initially described the downing as "tragic chance", Moscow has made its anger clear. The Russian leader urged Netanyahu "not to allow such situations in the future".

Later Tuesday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu telephoned Putin.

Russia on Tuesday summoned the Israeli ambassador after a Russian plane was shot down over Syria, an incident Moscow has blamed on the Israeli air force.

Israel worries Hezbollah has been improving its capabilities and increased its strikes in Syria to prevent weapons shipments to the group.

A report from the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a pro-opposition watchdog based in the United Kingdom, on Monday estimated more than 113 members of Iranian forces and Tehran-backed militias had been killed in Israeli attacks in the last two months. He went on to suggest that the nation's mission there was "very close to being finished".

"No one can force us to withdraw from Syria and as long as the Syrian leadership needs us we will stay there", he said.

"These attempts aimed at Syria's breakup failed, whereas the most tangible result of the Russian and Turkish leaders' new initiative has led to preservation of the country's territorial integrity", Sabi said.

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