On Wednesday afternoon, the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) used Patriot missiles to shoot down an unarmed Syrian intelligence UAV in Israeli airspace.
As a result of the Patriot missiles, sirens sounded around Northern Israel in the Golan and Jordan Valley areas. Rocket trails were spotted and shared on Twitter.
— Shai Ben-ari (@ShaiBenari) July 11, 2018
“The Patriot aerial defense system identified the threat and tracked it until its interception,” the IDF said in a social media post. “The IDF will not allow any violation of Israeli airspace and will act against any attempt to hurt its civilians.”
Alarms sounded in the Golan and the Jordan Valley regional councils
— IDF (@IDFSpokesperson) July 11, 2018
The Patriot missile defense system is a U.S.-made ground-based mobile defense interceptor that engages with targets such as UAVs, cruise missiles, and short-range missiles.
According to i24, the IDF was tracking the UAV before it entered Israeli airspace and confirmed with Jordanian and Russian officials that the UAV was not theirs. It is still unknown if the UAV crossed into Israeli airspace intentionally or accidentally.
The incident took place at the same time the Israeli prime minister arrived in Moscow to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin, who is allied closely with Bashar Al-Assad, the Syrian dictator.