Saturday morning an Iranian drone entered Israeli airspace near the Syrian border. It was shot down by an Israeli Apache helicopter. The IAF started as response to the severe violation of air sovereignty an attack on the Iranian base in Syria that had launched the drone. During the operation, the IAF was shot at by Syrian defense missiles.
Two Israeli F-16 fighter pilots were forced to abandon their aircraft, which went up in flames later and crashed down on Israeli territory. Both pilots landed safely in Israel, however, one of them was wounded critically. The pilots had recognized antiaircraft missiles locking onto their plane, prompting them to eject.
As a consequence, Israel launched a large-scale air-raid on 12 targets in Syria, among them three Syrian air defense batteries and four Iranian targets near the town of Kiswah.
Syria responded with heavy missile defense fire which triggered numerous air raid sirens in the North – mainly the Golan heights and the upper Galilee region.
Cover image: Israeli fighter jets during a parade on the Israeli Independence Day 2017