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Syria President Bashar al-Assad addresses reporters following his meeting with French President Nicolas Sarkozy at the Elysee Palace in Paris, Thursday Dec. 9, 2010. (AP Photo/Remy de la Mauviniere)

The US has downed a pro-Assad drone in Syria


A U.S. F-15E fighter jet has shot down a pro-Syrian government drone near At Tanf, Syria, two American officials told CNN Tuesday.

CNN reported that the incident occurred Monday and marks the third downing of an aircraft aligned with Syrian President Bashar Assad this month.

One official told CNN that the Iranian-made Shahed 129 was “assessed to be a threat,” noting it was thought to be armed and within firing range of U.S. troops.

Twitter users on Tuesday offered their take on the incident, the latest escalation in Syria’s raging civil war.

The U.S.-led global coalition in Syria on Tuesday confirmed the encounter between the American fighter jet and the drone the day before.

“[The drone was downed] after it displayed hostile intent and advanced on Coalition forces,” it said in a statement, according to CNN.

“[Coalition forces] were manning an established combat outpost to the northeast of At Tanf where they were training and advising partner grounds forces against ISIS.”

A separate Shahed 129 drone was reportedly shot down in Syria earlier this month after it dropped a “dud” munition near a patrol carried out by coalition troops and local forces.

A U.S. F/A-18E Super Hornet on Sunday also purportedly downed a Syrian warplane near the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria’s (ISIS) territory near Tabqa, Syria.

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