Reported interception by Patriot missile.
(photo credit: TZOFEN MATZAV)
Two IDF Patriot missiles fired at a suspicious drone that crossed into Israeli airspace from Syria missed their target on Sunday afternoon, and the unmanned aircraft returned to Syria.
Local civilian security guards briefly set off air sirens in the central Golan.
According to a Channel 10 report, a Hezbollah source said his organization flew the drone “as part of an operation against Israel.” The drone returned to base, according to the unconfirmed report.
The IDF was seeking to ascertain who operated the drone, and could not point to any party by press time.
Heavy air traffic by the Israel Air Force was heard by local residents following the intrusion.
An air to air missile fired at the target by an IAF aircraft also missed the drone.
Senior defense officials have been on the lookout for Hezbollah activity on the Syrian side of the Golan Heights.
A 14-year-old girl was lightly wounded by shrapnel, reportedly from the interceptors.
The IDF said no rockets had been fired at the Golan in the incident.
Patriot surface to air batteries have been used on at least two previous occasions to destroy enemy drones in Israeli air space.
In August 2014, a Patriot missile shot down a drone that entered Israeli airspace from Syria. The IDF said at the time that the drone had been launched from the Quneitra region in Syria, adjacent to the Israeli border.
“The IDF will not tolerate a breach of the State of Israel’s sovereignty,” the army said after the incident.
Army sources said that drone likely belonged to the military of Syrian President Bashar Assad’s regime, and strayed into Israeli airspace by accident.
In July 2014, an unmanned aerial aircraft entered Israeli territory from Gaza and was shot down over Ashdod by a Patriot missile battery. The drone set off a Code Red alert siren in the city.
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