Israeli warplanes strike Syrian anti-aircraft battery after coming under 'fire'

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

Israel's military says its warplanes struck a Syrian anti-aircraft battery near Damascus on Monday after the battery fired on its planes.

The anti-aircraft battery disabled in this attack had, according to Israeli intelligence, been the site of a confrontation in March with the Syrians. Lieutenant-Colonel Conricus said the Israeli military informed Russian Federation of its Syria strike "in real time or immediately before" it took place, and would brief Shoigu.

Syria also claimed that the Israeli jets were targeted after then entered Syrian airspace, a claim that Israeli denied. IDF spokesman Brig. Gen. Ronen Manelis said the Russian military was notified in real-time as the Israeli strike was launched and that the incident would be addressed directly with Shoigu. America and Russian Federation responded to Netanyahu's criticism by saying Israel's interests would be taken into account in the war-torn state.

The Israeli military said it holds the Syrian regime responsible for any anti-aircraft fire. But IDF spokesperson Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus said, both initially and in response to the Syrian assertion, that the reconnaissance planes "were in the skies over Lebanon, and not in Syria".

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Syria's SANA state news agency reported that the Assad regime "warned of the unsafe repercussions of Israel's repeated aggression attempts, stressing Syria's determination to continue its war against the terrorist groups, Israel's arm in the region".

He noted that it was Shoigu's first visit to Israel as Russia's defense minister.

Most of the incidents took place in the Golan Heights, internationally recognized as Syrian territory that was seized by Israel during the Six-Day War in 1967 with the peace treaty never signed.

Israel has largely stayed out of the fighting in Syria, but has occasionally carried out strikes on Syrian military positions.

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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