The military released on Saturday a video of Israeli attack helicopters shooting down an Iranian drone infiltrating Israeli airspace from Syria. In response to the drone infiltration, Israeli aircraft stuck Iranian targets in Syria, with a barrage of Syrian air-defense missiles bringing down an Israeli F-16 over Israel.
IDF Spokesman Brig. Gen. Ronen Manelis said Israel "identified an Iranian drone drone which took off from Syrian territory. The drone was identified by IAF systems and was downed by an IAF helicopter. The Iranian drone fell in our territory and is in our possession."
Manlis said that Israel targeted the control site from which "the Iranians launched the drone," adding that, "This was a surgical action deep in Syria, target destroyed."
"This is a serious Iranian attack on Israeli territory," Manelis said "Iran is dragging the region into a situation in which it doesn't know how it will end. We are prepared for a variety of incidents...whoever is responsible for this incident is the one who will pay the price."
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Following the downing of the Israeli fighter jet, Israel said it carried out "large scale strikes" in Syria targeting Syrian air-defense batteries and four Iranian sites.
Iran rejected as "ridiculous" reports that Israel had intercepted an Iranian drone launched from Syria. In a first official response, it said "Reports of downing an Iranian drone flying over Israel and also Iran's involvement in attacking an Israeli jet are so ridiculous ... Iran only provides military advice to Syria," TV quoted Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qasemi as saying.
Earlier on Saturday, the pro-Assad military alliance, which includes Iran and Hezbollah, warned Israel that any new act of what it called "terrorism" will be met with a "severe and serious response."