Israel was responding to an Iranian drone entering Israeli airspace earlier in the day.
Anti-aircraft fire downed an Israeli warplane returning from a bombing raid on Iran-backed positions in Syria on Saturday in the most serious confrontations yet between Israel and Iranian-backed forces based across the border.
The F-16, one of at least eight Israeli planes despatched in response to what Israel said was an Iranian drone’s incursion into its airspace earlier in the day, was hit by a Syrian anti-aircraft missile and crashed in northern Israel, an Israeli official told Reuters.
Both pilots ejected and were injured, one critically.
Israel then launched a second and more intensive air raid, hitting what it said were 12 Iranian and Syrian targets in Syria, including Syrian air defense systems…
Iran’s involvement in Syria in support of President Bashar al-Assad in a nearly 7-year-old civil war – including the deployment of Iran-backed forces near the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights – has alarmed Israel, which has said it would counter any threat.