The Israeli military is taking de-escalation measures so that the tragic incident with the Russian Il-20 aircraft in Syria would not repeat itself, Israel Defense Forces Spokesman Jonathan Conricus told Russian journalists on Wednesday.
“We are constantly doing this. There are safety measures that are constantly being taken. We will continue to do so,” he said in response to a question by TASS about whether Israel is planning to take de-escalation measures to avoid tragic incidents like the Il-20 crash. “It is a professional mechanism that works, it has proved many times its effectiveness,” he stated, adding that it is in the interest of both Russia and Israel.
“We immediately expressed our condolences to the families of airmen. Syrians hit the airplane. We hope that the Syrians and everybody else will learn the lessons of that event and will be much more careful in the future,” Conricus added.
According to the Russian Defense Ministry, on September 17, a Russian Il-20 aircraft flying over the Mediterranean Sea back to the Russian Khmeimim air base in Syria disappeared from radar during an airstrike carried out by four Israeli F-16 fighter jets on targets in the Syrian province of Latakia.
The Russian Defense Ministry informed that the Il-20 aircraft had been accidently downed by Syrian air defenses as the Israeli F-16 jets had been using it as cover.
Russian Defense Ministry Spokesman Major General Igor Konashenkov stated that the Israeli Air Force and those who made the decision to use the Il-20 aircraft as cover were solely to blame for its crash, which claimed the lives of 15 Russian military servicemen.