Israeli fighter jet crashes under Syria fighter
An Israeli F-16 fighter jet crashed Saturday in northern Israel after coming under “massive anti-aircraft fire” from Syrian forces, according to the Israeli army.
The incident came after an Israeli combat helicopter successfully intercepted an Iranian unmanned aerial vehicle that had been launched from Syria, the Israel Defense Forces said in a statement.
Both pilots aboard the Israeli jet are safe, the Israeli army said, although one pilot was severely injured as a result of an emergency evacuation from the plane.
The crash happened as Israeli forces attacked 12 targets in Syria, including three aerial defense batteries and four targets described as Iranian, the IDF said.
The IDF statement described the four Iranian targets as “part of Iran’s military establishment in Syria.”
The statement concludes: “The IDF will act determinately against such severe violations of Israeli sovereignty by Iran and Syria and will continue to act as necessary.”
Syrian state news agency SANA reported that Syrian air defense forces had responded Saturday to what they called an Israeli “aggression” by hitting more than one Israeli plane, following attacks on a Syrian military base by Israel jets.
“The Israeli enemy entity early morning at dawn conducted a new aggression against one of the military bases in the central region,” SANA said, citing a military source.
IDF spokesman Jonathan Conricus told CNN that only one Israeli aircraft had come down, with all others returning safely to base. The cause of the F-16 crash is being investigated, Conricus said.