Israeli media reports Russian forces fired at Israeli military aircraft in the past

Israeli newspaper releases report just as Netanyahu met with Putin in Moscow; Putin reportedly made aware of incident last month during Rivlin visit

An Israeli F-16 fighter jet (Reuters)

Reports have surfaced that Russian forces in Syria reportedly fired at Israeli military aircraft at least two times in the past weeks.

The reports were released by Israel’s Yedioth Ahronot newspaper, with mixed reported from Israeli media surfacing over the past few hours, most claiming that Israeli President Reuven Rivlin brought the incident to Putin’s attention last month during his visit to Moscow (March 15), Putin reportedly claiming it was the first time he had heard of the incident. Israel’s Channel 10 reported that a Russian warplane approached an Israeli jet off the Mediterranean coast of Syria last week with no contact reported.

Prime Minister Netanyahu met with President Putin in Moscow yesterday, their meeting focused on continued military coordination between Russia and Syria, Israeli media claiming their meeting was additionally focused on the incident. Netanyahu stated on Thursday that “I came here with one main goal – to strengthen the security coordination between us so as to avoid mishaps, misunderstandings and unnecessary confrontations.”

Following their meeting, Netanyahu stated “I set the goal of the meeting as strengthening coordination between Russia and Israel to prevent mishaps… I think we clarified some matters, and that is very important… During the meeting, it was agreed that GOC Air Force Maj.-Gen. Amir Eshel and my Military Secretary, Brig.-Gen. Eliezer Toledano, will hold a special meeting with the Russian Defense Minister and several other generals. They will meet and discuss – in a detailed and efficient manner – the coordination between our militaries and several other issues that have recently arisen… I think that this is vital because we must maintain freedom of action for the IDF and the air force in places that are important to us vis-à-vis our security, and I think that this was achieved.”

Netanyahu will return to Russia on June 7.