SYRIA (VOP) – The press service of the IDF acknowledged that the F-16 military aircraft that crashed on Saturday was hit by fire from the ground.

As reported in the material of the press service, on the aircraft of the Israeli Air Force during the attack, several anti-aircraft missiles were fired, and one was struck.

According to the military, fire on the aircraft was conducted by Syrian government troops, used S-200 and Buk anti-aircraft missile systems, material said.

The pilots of the fighter ejected and landed on Israeli territory. At the same time, the pilot suffered serious injuries. He is currently in hospital in Haifa, he underwent an operation. The navigator suffered less seriously and is already “on his feet,” Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, who spoke with him on the phone, reported.

On Saturday, an Iranian drone entered the Israeli airspace, which was intercepted, then the Israeli Air Force struck at the Iranian UAV control point at the T-4 airbase near the Syrian Palmyra.

After that, fire was opened from the ground, as a result of which the fighter was struck. Until then, the Israeli military had not said that it led to the crash of the F-16, which participated in a raid on Syria, and called the hit of an anti-aircraft missile a “probable but not confirmed” reason.

For its part, the Syrian government welcomed the actions of the armed forces “to repel the Israeli aggressors,” the statement of the Council of Ministers of the republic says.

“The Syrian army has once again proved that it is a reliable defender of national sovereignty, a bulwark of security and stability,” the document stresses.

It notes that the Syrian air defense, which repulsed a missile attack on Israel on Saturday and hit the most modern aircraft, “put an end to Israeli invasions into the sky of Syria.”