Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman threatened to destroy Syrian air defense systems after the Syrian military launched ground-to-air missiles against Israeli warplanes illegally carrying out strikes against targets in the country.
“The next time the Syrians use their air defense systems against our planes we will destroy them without the slightest hesitation,” The Time Of Israel quoted Lieberman’s statement on Israeli public radio.
The Israeli Air Force delivered airstrikes in Syria last Friday, hitting some targets allegedly belonging to Hezbollah, according to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
However, the Israeli airstrikes were delivered near the ancient city of Palmyra which is located far away from the Israeli-Syrian or Israeli-Lebanese border. Palmyra was liberated from the ISIS terrorist group earlier in March and since then government forces, predominantly fighters of the Syrian army, have been conducting a large-scale operation against the terrorist group in its countryside.
In response to the Israeli actions, the Syrian military launched S-200 ground-to-air missiles and claimed that 1 Israeli warplane was downed and another one hit by them. The Israel Defense Forces argued that there were no any losses from the Israeli side. According to photo-evidence, at least one missile was intercepted by Israel’s Arrow missile defense system.
As the ISIS is heading to its collapse in Syria and Iraq, various regional and world power intensify their efforts to draw the shape of the new balance of power in the Middle East. The Israeli actions are an example of this situation.