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US Shoots Down Another One Of Assad’s Drones Over Syria

OVER GUAM -- An F-15E Strike Eagle from the 391st Expeditionary Fighter Squadron pops flares during an aerial training dog fight here recently. The 391st EFS are deployed here from Mountain Home Air Force Base, Idaho, on a rotational basis supporting the U.S. Air Force's continued forward presence in the Western Pacific. (U.S. Air Force photo by Technical Sgt. Cecilio Ricardo)

A U.S. fighter jet shot down a pro-Syrian regime drone Tuesday over southern Syria, the second such attack in less than a month.

A U.S. F-15E Strike Eagle shot down the Shaheed-129 drone “after it displayed hostile intent and advanced on Coalition forces” near a joint special operations base in At-Tanf. The base was previously attacked by a pro-regime drone on June 8, which forced the U.S. to shoot it down.

“The F-15E intercepted the armed UAV after it was observed advancing on the Coalition position,” said Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve, the U.S.-led anti-Islamic State coalition, in a statement on Tuesday. “When the armed UAV continued to advance on the Coalition position without diverting its course it was shot down.”

The engagement follows a previous encounter between U.S. and Syrian forces on Sunday, when a U.S. F/A-18E Super Hornet shot down a Syrian SU-22 fighter after it attacked Coalition partners in Syria. The Coalition described the strike as a “show of force.”


Despite the increase in incidents between pro-regime and U.S. forces, the Coalition insisted that it does not seek a fight with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad or his allies.

“The Coalition has made it clear to all parties [publicly] and through the de-confliction line with Russian forces that the demonstrated hostile intent and actions of pro-regime forces toward Coalition and partner forces in Syria conducting legitimate counter-ISIS operations will not be tolerated,” said the Coalition statement.

Coalition forces also noted that a “de-confliction mechanism” with Russian forces exists to reduce accidents, but that it “will not allow pro-regime aircraft to threaten or approach in close proximity to Coalition and partnered forces.”

The statement called on all parties to “focus their efforts” on the “common enemy,” ISIS.

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Russ Read
the authorRuss Read
Russ Read is a foreign policy reporter and Pentagon correspondent for The Daily Caller News Foundation. He covers defense, terrorism and the Middle East and friends.

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