Israel to Russia: Assad's safe from us, but Iran must quit Syria

Israel will not ‘rule out’ ties with Syrian govt – Defence minister

Israel fires missile at drone that entered from Syria

"We won't take action against the Assad regime, and you get the Iranians out", Benjamin Netanyahu allegedly told Vladimir Putin during a meeting in Moscow on Wednesday, adding that Israel will continue to protect its border from air and land.

The Israeli Defence Force tweeted early on Thursday morning to confirm they had targeted "three military posts" in Syria earlier that evening.

Israel worries Assad could let his Iranian and Hezbollah reinforcements entrench near Israeli lines or that Syrian forces may defy a 1974 Golan demilitarisation. There were no reports of injuries over the drone's incursion.

A report by the New Yorker magazine on Tuesday claimed that Israel, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates had all separately urged Trump to offer Putin to lift U.S. sanctions related to its 2014 annexation of Crimea in exchange for removing Iranian forces from Syria.

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Netanyahu said he also informed the Russian leader that Israel had downed an unmanned Syrian surveillance drone that flew over the Golan Heights on July 11, and said any future intrusions into its airspace would be treated the same way.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based war monitor, said missiles likely fired by Israeli forces hit the north of the province and areas along the border with the Golan Heights.

"Their use of military force in Syria would inevitably lead to an escalation of tensions across the entire Middle East region", he said.

The meeting between Netanyahu and Putin is to be their ninth meeting in the last three years.

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Netanyahu's government has made clear it would not now cede the plateau and has been lobbying for United States recognition of Israel's claim of sovereignty there.

The Israel Air Force said it waited about 15 minutes - allowing it to travel about 10 kilometers (six miles) into Israeli territory - before shooting down the drone, in order to ascertain precisely who had launched and was operating the equipment.

The drone was identified and tracked by Israel's aerial defense systems and later intercepted by an Apache helicopter around 4 a.m. near the town of Beit She'an in northern Israel, the IDF said.

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