US shoots down another pro-regime drone in Syria
- Author: Leroy Wright Jun 21, 2017,
Jun 21, 2017, 9:13
A U.S. F-15 fighter aircraft shot down an Iranian-made drone over southern Syria on Tuesday, a USA defense official said, marking the second time in just as many days that the us military has taken a pro-Syrian government aircraft out of the sky.
It is the second downing of a pro-regime drone in the area and comes amid heightened tensions in the region after the US downing of a Syrian fighter jet on Sunday.
A USA warplane destroyed an armed Syrian drone after American forces said it "displayed hostile intent and advanced on coalition forces", the US military said.
The official says the drone was considered a threat, and was shot down by a U.S. F-15 fighter jet.
The US-led anti-ISIL coalition said an F-15E Strike Eagle jet destroyed the Shaheed-129 drone around 12.30am, north-east of the Al Tanaf garrison which is close to the Jordanian border.
The drone, downed near a combat outpost in the town of At-Tanf, was the second one shot down by USA forces in 12 days; the downing comes as Pentagon officials are working to defuse heightened tensions in southeastern Syria.
It comes after Russian Federation threatened to target coalition warplanes in retaliation for the USA downing a Syrian government jet, and as a United States jet on Wednesday morning (AEST) downed a pro-Syrian regime drone in the country's southeast.
Murphy's remarks came two days after a U.S. Navy fighter jet shot down a Syrian warplane for the first time, prompting Russian Federation to issue a threat against American airborne assets over Syrian airspace.
That led Russian Federation, a close ally of Syrian President Bashar Assad, to warn that it would target US-led coalition planes flying west of the Euphrates River.
The top American general says the United States is working to restore a communications line with Russian Federation meant to avoid mid-air collisions over Syria, after Moscow cut it off following the U.S. downing of a Syrian military jet on Sunday.
The US Central Command said it acted in "collective self-defense".
Australia is part of a US-led coalition that has been waging war against Islamic State militants in Syria and Iraq.
In a statement issued Tuesday, the Soufan Center, a security and intelligence firm monitoring the conflict, said: "The sheer number of rival military operations and escalating tensions in Syria makes miscalculations more likely than ever, with the potential for enormous consequences".
No Americans or US allies were wounded in either incident, officials said.
Mr Sharif told Associated Press the missile launch reflected Iran's "military power", though he stressed Iran has no intention of starting another war. It is still unclear what the missiles struck, and Iran has provided few details.