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Syria says downed Israeli aircraft, Israel denies

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Syria says downed Israeli aircraft, Israel denies

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The Syrian army was said to have downed an Israeli warplane and a drone on Tuesday, but Israel promptly denied the report.

Syrian state news agency SANA said the Israeli fighter jet had attacked an army position overnight in southern Syria, in the countryside near Guneitra, and that it and a drone had been shot down.

But the Israeli military denied any of its aircraft had been downed, saying two missiles were indeed fired at them during the air strike, but missed their targets.

The Israeli military said earlier that its aircraft had attacked targets in Syria, just hours after a stray mortar bomb from fighting among factions in Syria struck the Golan Heights on Monday evening. No casualties were reported in the Israeli-held territory. The military said in a statement “aircraft targeted artillery positions of (the) Syrian regime in the central Syrian Golan Heights”.

Israel has responded similarly in the past when fire from the Syrian civil war spilled over into its territory. A military spokeswoman told Reuters that Tuesday’s strike was the fourth retaliation since September 4.

The strike came hours after a nationwide ceasefire in Syria brokered by the United States and Russia went into effect on Monday evening, the second attempt this year by Washington and Moscow to halt the five-year-old civil war.

Israel captured the Golan, a strategic plateau, from Syria in the 1967 Middle East war and annexed it in 1981 in a move that has not won international recognition.

With Reuters

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