Netanyahu Orders Commander to Continue Contacts With Russia on Il-20 Incident

TEL AVIV (Sputnik) - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Friday received a report from Air Force Commander Maj. Gen. Amikam Norkin on the results of his talks in Moscow on the crash of the Russian Il-20 in Syria and instructed him to continue contacts with Russia on this matter, Netanyahu's office said.

"This morning, Prime Minister Netanyahu held a meeting with the leadership of the security bloc, during which he listened to a detailed report of Air Force Commander Norkin on the talks in Moscow," the press release said.

"The prime minister instructed [Norkin] to continue constant contacts with Russia," the office said in a statement.

An Israeli military delegation led by Norkin visited Moscow on Thursday to defuse tensions over the downing of a Russian plane by Syrian air defenses during an Israeli air raid on Latakia.

READ MORE: Kremlin Yet to Decide on Israel Ties After Plane Crash in Syria

Earlier this week, the Russian Defense Ministry stated that contact with the Russian Il-20 returning to the Hmeymim Airbase was lost late on September 17. The ministry said that at around that time, four Israeli F-16 fighters attacked Syrian targets in Latakia.

A Russian Il-20 reconnaissance aircraft (File) - Sputnik International
IDF Source Claims Israel Warned Russia Much Earlier Than Minute Before Airstrike
According to the ministry, Israeli pilots put the Russian aircraft in the line of fire of Syria's air defenses, and the Il-20 was shot down by an S-200 missile. All fifteen Russian servicemen onboard were killed.

The Russian Defense Ministry stated that the Israeli aircraft had deliberately created a dangerous situation in Latakia, as Israel had not warned the command of the Russian group of troops in Syria about the planned operation in the area. The Russian military noted it regards Israel's provocative actions as hostile and reserves the right to a proper response.

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