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Putin to hold telephone conversation with Netanyahu — Kremlin

Russian President Vladimir Putin will hold a telephone conversation with Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu later on Tuesday, Putin’s press secretary Dmitry Peskov said.

"(The conversation is planned) later in the day," he answered a TASS question.

The Russian defense ministry said earlier that a Russian Ilyushin Il-20 plane that was flying back to the airbase at Syria’s Hmeymim crashed over the Mediterranean Sea late on Monday. According to the ministry, four Israeli F-16 fighter jet were delivering airstrikes on Syrian targets in the Latakia governorate at the moment. The ministry said the Russian Il-20 was shot down by Syria’s air defense over the Mediterranean Sea because Israel’s F-16 fighter jets used it as a cover, since the Israeli command centers and the F-16s’ pilots could not but see the Russian plane, which was approaching the runway from an altitude of five kilometers. Fifteen Russian crew members died.

The ministry described Israel’s provocative actions as hostile, saying it reserves the right to an adequate response.

Putin said the incident was a chain of tragic events and refrained from drawing any parallels with the a similar incident when a Russian plane was downed over Syria by Turkish air force.

[Source: Itar Tass, Moscow, 18Sep18]

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