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Russia, Israel continue to improve Syria deconfliction mechanism — source

On September 17, 2018, Russia’s aircraft was accidently downed by Syrian air defenses that were targeting four Israeli F-16 fighter jets

TEL AVIV, August 21. /TASS/. Russian and Israeli military officials continue negotiations to improve the existing deconfliction mechanism on Syria, a Russian diplomatic source informed TASS on Wednesday.

"We had and have agreements with Israel on how we should act in the event of extraordinary situations. Some time ago, we came to an understanding that it was necessary to formalize them [the agreements]. The talks between military officials continue. We hope that they will end soon yielding good results," he said.

"These are complicated issues, as they concern security on both sides. Our interest lies in maximizing the security of Russian military servicemen in the country neighboring Israel," the source added.

On September 17, 2018, Russia’s Ilyushin Il-20 aircraft was accidently downed by Syrian air defenses over the Mediterranean Sea when it was returning to the Hmeymim airbase. The Russian Defense Ministry reported that a missile from Syria’s S-200 system downed the aircraft as targeting four Israeli F-16 fighter jets, which attacked facilities in Latakia. All 15 Russian crew members were killed. The Israeli Air Force and those who made the decision to use the Il-20 aircraft as cover are solely to blame for its crash, the Defense Ministry said.