According to news outlets in Israel, Russian Aerospace Forces aircraft scrambled to intercept fighters belonging to Israel’s Kheil HaAvir. While some report there was no real confrontation, others say the encounters were tense and nearly resulted in shots being exchanged. Not sure what is true in this case, but definitely noteworthy!
According to one account on the Ynet news website, a single Russian jet was scrambled to meet an Israeli military aircraft operating along the northern border. The report stated that it was unclear why the Russian fighter was launched. It noted that the two planes did not make contact and that the Israeli fighter continued on its course unobstructed.
A second report on Channel 2 news claimed that the incident occurred between Russian and Israeli squadrons, as Israeli jets flew along the Syrian coastline. The two fighter groups reportedly approached each other, and very nearly confronted each other. However, contacts between Israeli and Russian officials through a coordination body set up last year prevented a more serious incident.
Finally, Channel 10 military reporter Alon Ben-David appeared to combine the two accounts, tweeting Thursday that a single Russian jet was scrambled to meet an Israeli squadron over the Syrian coast. He too noted that the incident never became a full-blown confrontation, and that none of the planes had locked onto each other.
Whatever the details of the occurrence, it appeared to have taken place several days before Thursday’s meeting between Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Russian President Vladimir Putin, which focused in part on coordination between the two militaries along the Syrian border, and which the Israeli premier called “very successful.”