Israeli Security Cabinet Expresses Sorrow Over Deadly Downing of Russian Plane in Syria

Netanyahu vows to 'continue to act against Iran’s entrenchment in Syria' before heading to New York for UN General Assembly

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu boards a plane on his way to New York to attend the United Nations General Assembly with his wife Sara, Tuesday, September 25, 2018
Avi Ohayon / Government Press Office

Israel's security cabinet convened an emergency meeting Tuesday to discuss recent tensions with Syria after the downing of a Russian plane last week, which killed 15 Russian airmen. 

"The ministers share in the deep sorrow of the Russian families and the Russian people after the loss of life of the aircrew of the Russian plane, that was downed by irresponsible Syrian fire," the security cabinet said in a rare statement after the meeting.

"We will continue to act against Iran’s entrenchment in Syria and we will continue to coordinate between the IDF and the Russian military," the statement continued.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu echoed these comments on his way to New York to attend the United Nations General Assembly gathering.  

"Over the past three years Israel has been extremely successful in preventing Iranian entrenchment in Syria and Iran’s attempts to transfer deadly weapons to Hezbollah in Lebanon," Netanyahu said, adding: "We did it with the utmost security coordination with Syria’s military, which has been very successful." 

"We give the IDF full backing in its actions to defend the country," Netanyahu continued. "We will continue to act against Iran’s entrenchment in Syria and we will continue to coordinate between the IDF and the Russian military."

Fifteen Russian airmen were killed when the Ilyushin 20 airplane was mistakenly shot down by Syria's air defenses soon after an Israeli strike near the Syrian coastal city of Latakia. The Israel Air Force attacked a facility inside Syria containing systems to manufacture precision rockets for Iran and Hezbollah.