Middle East

Israel's Patriot missile defense system knocks down drone from Syria

Ben Collins, US Army Special Forces veteran, provides insight

 

A missile from Israel's Patriot Aerial Defense System knocked down a drone that was about to enter Israeli airspace from Syria Thursday, military officials said.

The incident happened on shortly before 8 p.m. local time. No damage or injuries were reported.

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It happened hours after an alleged Israeli airstrike on Iranian weapons that were stored in the Damascus airport, but it was not clear whether the two incidents are connected.

Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman said Wednesday while on a visit to Moscow that Israel "will not allow Iranian and Hezbollah forces to be amassed on the Golan Heights border."  Lieberman, who is attending a security conference in the Russian capital, met with Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov on Wednesday.

Lieberman discussed the crisis in Syria and the continued coordination between the Israeli and the Russian armies with the Russian officails, according to a statement from Israel's Ministry of Defense. It added that Lieberman "expressed concern over Iranian activity in Syria and the Iranian use of Syrian soil as a base for arms smuggling to Hezbollah in Lebanon."

A senior Israeli officer said Tuesday the nation's air force destroyed around 100 Syrian missiles, many of which were due to be delivered to Hezbollah, in an attack last month. This was a rare admission that Israel had taken military action in Syria.

Last month, several anti-aircraft missiles were launched from Syria following another Israeli airstrike. The Arrow aerial defense system intercepted one of those missiles.