Israel Demands UN Security Council 'Put an End to Iranian Provocation'

Iranian drone's infiltration into Israel 'proves that each and every one' of Israel warnings turned out to be true, ambassador Dannon says

Israel asked the United Nations Security Council on Saturday to condemn Iran after an Iranian drone was shot down over Israeli territory earlier in the day. The Israeli ambassador to the UN called on the panel to "put an end to Iranian provocations."

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The Israeli military says it shot down an Iranian drone that infiltrated the country and struck Iranian targets in Syria that launched it. Syrian air-defense missiles hit an Israeli F-16 fighter jet, prompting the pilots to eject. Following the downing of the jet, Israel carried out what an Air Force general said was the "largest and most significant" strike in Syria since 1982.

"This is not the first time that we have warned you of Iran’s dangerous actions that undermine the situation in our region," ambassador Danny Danon wrote in the letter. "Israel will defend its citizens and will not tolerate any violation of its sovereignty. Israel will defend its citizens and will not tolerate any violation of its sovereignty."

In the letter, Dannon called on the Security Council to condemn Iran. "I call on the Security Council to condemn this dangerous act and to put an immediate end to Iranian provocations. Security Council members must not stand idly by while Iran is instigating dangerous escalations and violating Security Council resolutions."

UN soldiers look out on a post at Mount Avital, in the Golan Heights near the Israeli Syrian border, February 10, 2018.
\ AMMAR AWAD/ REUTERS

Hezbollah earlier said that the downing of an Israeli F-16 marks the "start of a new strategic phase."

"Today's developments mean the old equations have categorically ended," the group said in an official statement.

Russia, a member of the Security Council, expressed serious concerns about the latest developments in Syria and called on the sides to exercise restraint and avoid an escalation of the situation.

"We urge all sides to exercise restraint and to avoid any actions that could lead to an even greater complication of the situation," the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement. "It is necessary to unconditionally respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Syria and other countries in the region." 

Iran, meanwhile, issued its first official response to the events, with its Foreign Ministry rejecting as "ridiculous" reports that Israel had intercepted an Iranian drone launched from Syria.