On May 19, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) announced that they had shot down a “suspicious” drone over the Palestinian Gaza Strip.
In a statement, the IDF said that the drone did not enter Israeli airspace. The drone was shot down with an Iron Dome interceptor while it was over Gaza. According to the army, the drone “was monitored throughout the entire incident” by the ground control of the Israeli Air Force.
The IDF did not say if the drone belonged to any of the Palestinian factions in Gaza. The military wing of the Hamas Movement, the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, and the military wing of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, al-Quds Brigades, are both known to be operating drones out of the Palestinian enclave.
Usually, the IDF shoots down the drones of Palestinian factions only when they are being flown out of Gaza towards nearby Israeli settlements or the sea.
Right after the IDF announcement, the al-Quds Brigades released drone footage showing the outskirts of Gaza. The footage was taken during the 2021 Gaza battle.
Very recently, the al-Quds Brigades unveiled a copy of the Iranian KAS-04 drone, dubbed “Jenin”. The Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades operates a similar drone dubbed “Shehab,” which is a copy of Iran’s Ababil-2.
The IDF has been working to improve its ability to detect and intercept combat drones for the last few years in response to the rapid development of drones by Iran’s allies in Gaza, Lebanon, Syria and Yemen.
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