Hezbollah Hails Syrian Air defenses For Downing Israel F16

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The confrontation started when a Iranian drone penetrated Israeli's northern airspace from Syria and a helicopter downed the un-manned object around 4:30 a.m., Israel's military said. "Iran seeks to use Syrian territory to attack Israel for its professed goal of destroying Israel", he said.

What we can learn from this event is that the IDF has exceptional intelligence on the Iranian operation and its entrenchment in Syria.

Syrian state news agency SANA said the air defense system "hit more than one aircraft".

Israeli news website Ynet quoted the Israeli army spokesperson's office as saying "the Syrians and Iranians are playing with fire".

Separately, a Revolutionary guards official said he could not confirm the report since Israelis were "liars".

Israel says it has inflicted huge damage on Syrian air defences after one of its fighter jets was brought down during a raid over Syria. The broadcaster said sounds of explosions were heard Saturday in Reef Damascus province, near the capital city.

This week, Israeli missiles targeted a Syrian military research center in the countryside near Damascus.

The response was the "most significant attack" of its kind against Syria since the 1982 Lebanon war, said senior Israeli air force general Tomer Bar.

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Israel's chief military spokesman said Israel held Iran directly responsible for the incident.

"The Islamic Republic of Iran has advisory presence in Syria at the request of the country's legitimate and constitutional government", Qassemi said.

A military statement said: "During the attack, multiple anti-aircraft missiles were fired at IAF (Israel Air Force) aircraft".

"Today's developments mean the old equations have categorically ended", the heavily-armed Shi'ite Muslim movement said in a statement. The Shiite allies have sent forces to back Syrian President Bashar Assad, who appears headed toward victory after years of fighting. Russian Federation expressed "serious concern" over the Israeli air strikes and called for all sides to show restraint.

"We urge all parties involved to exercise restraint and to avoid any actions that could lead to an even greater complication of the situation", the ministry said.

"It is necessary to unconditionally respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Syria and other countries in the region".

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman were convening a meeting of the top brass at military headquarters in Tel Aviv to discuss a further response. "Clearly it didn't stop Israel from making sure it's messages were received on the other side - that we will not tolerate this kind of thing", he said.

Israel seized 1,200 square kilometres (460 square miles) of the Golan Heights from Syria in the six-day war of 1967 and later annexed it in a move never recognised by the global community.