IDF delegation briefs Moscow officials on Syria friendly fire incident

An Israeli military delegation has held a number of high level meetings with Russian officials in Moscow over the downing of a Russian plane off the coast of Syria during an Israeli airstrike earlier in the week, the army says.

The Israeli officials, led by air force chief Maj. Gen. Amikam Norkin, have shown their Russian counterparts the IDF’s initial investigation of the incident, as well as intelligence regarding Iranian efforts to establish a permanent military presence in Syria and to transfer advanced weaponry to terrorist groups in the region.

“The meetings were held in good spirit, and there was professional, open and transparent dialogue on various issues and an emphasis was put on the importance of the two nations’ interests and the continuation of the deconfliction mechanism,” the Israel Defense Forces says, referring to a hotline between the two countries.

Norkin’s delegation is expected to remain in Moscow until tomorrow morning.

On Monday night, the Israeli Air Force conducted an airstrike against a Syrian weapons facility near the city of Latakia, which Israel said was being used to store and transfer advanced munitions for Hezbollah and other Iranian proxies.

The Israeli raid triggered a response from the Syrian military’s air defenses, which failed to hit the IAF jets, but shot down a Russian spy plane that Israel says only entered the area after the attack.

The downing of the plane sparked a flurry of condemnation of Russia and a full diplomatic push by Israel to resolve the issue.

— Judah Ari Gross

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