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Russian Federation says Syrian government officials will attend Geneva peace talks

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Israel threatens to destroy Syrian air defence systems

Russia's foreign ministry on Friday summoned Israel's ambassador to explain the activity - the first time Israel has been asked to do so since Russian Federation entered the Syrian war two years ago.

Syria's military said it had downed one of the Israeli planes and hit another as they were carrying out the pre-dawn strikes near the famed desert city of Palmyra that it recaptured from jihadists this month.

The diplomatic intervention marks the first apparent fracture in the secretive deconfliction arrangement between the Russian president, Vladimir Putin, and Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, over where, when and who Israeli jets can strike in Syria. -Israeli missile interceptor will be operational soon, completing Israel's multi-layer defense system, a senior Israeli air force official said Monday.

Syria's use of anti-aircraft missiles against the Israeli jets however suggested an increased confidence in the Assad regime, which has seen a number of similar air raids by Israel.

In a rare statement, the Israel Defense Forces confirmed to having carried out aerial strikes in Syria and intercepted missiles launched at its aircraft from the ground.

The official said the missile was identified as a ballistic threat and had a heavy warhead that could have landed inside Israel if not intercepted.

Israel has a long record of violating Syrian airspace with impunity that stretches back to before 2011, when the country's current armed conflict began. Syria's ambassador to the UN, Bashar al-Jaafari, on Sunday insisted the Syrian response was "in line with Israel's terrorist operation" and had "changed the rules of the game".

While Israel has largely avoided getting sucked into the conflict directly, it has repeatedly struck Syrian territory, particularly targeting alleged Hezbollah weapons convoys.

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