On Tuesday, A U.S. aircraft shot down an armed Iranian drone advancing on coalition forces in southern Syria.
According to reports, the armed pro-regime Shaheed-129 UAV was shot down by a U.S. F-15E Strike Eagle about 12:30 a.m. after it displayed hostile intent and advanced on Coalition forces. This is the second the U.S. shot down an Iranian drone in less than a month.
The coalition forces were working at an established combat outpost to the northeast of At Tanf. At the outpost, the coalition are training and advising partner ground forces in the fight against ISIS. This is the same location where another pro-regime UAV dropped munitions near coalition forces before it was shot down on June 8.
The F-15E intercepted the armed UAV after it was seen advancing on the coalition position. The armed UAV was shot down when it continued to advance on the coalition’s position without changing course.
It has been made clear by the coalition to all parties that forces demonstrating hostile intent and actions of pro-regime forces toward coalition and partner forces in Syria conducting legitimate counter-ISIS operations will not be tolerated.
There is a deconfliction mechanism in place with Russian forces to reduce uncertainty in this highly contested space and minimize the chances of strategic miscalculation. The coalition will not allow pro-regime aircraft to threaten or approach in close proximity to Coalition and partnered forces.
The coalition presence in Syria addresses the imminent threat ISIS in Syria poses globally. It does not seek to fight Syrian regime, Russian, or pro-regime forces partnered with them, but will not hesitate to defend Coalition or partner forces from any threat. The coalition’s sole purpose is to focus their efforts on defeating Isis.
Tuesday’s incident also marks the fifth time since late May that the U.S. military has bombed pro-Syrian forces in southern Syria.
On Sunday, a U.S. F-18 Super Hornet shot down a Syrian Air Force fighter jet near the town Tabqa for the first time, U.S.-led coalition headquarters in Iraq said in a statement. The Syrian government SU-22 dropped bombs near the Syrian Democratic Forces.