The flareup on the northern border marked the first direct confrontation between the Israeli air force and the Iranian regime on Israeli territory.
Israel has warned of growing Iranian entrenchment in neighboring Syria and has said it will not abide an Iranian military presence on its borders.
The comment echoed Zarif’s response to Netanyahu in Munich, downplaying the drone stunt as a “cartoonish circus” and saying it “doesn’t deserve the dignity of a response.”
Israel has been warning for years that Iran is seeking to entrench itself militarily in Syria.
According to Israeli political and military assessments, Tehran, which has shored up dictator Bashar Assad in the Syrian civil war, has been working to create air and naval bases in Syria, from which it can arm the Lebanon-based terror organization Hezbollah and other Shiite groups, as well as carry out attacks of its own against the Jewish state.
“The year 2018 has the potential for escalation [of military conflict], not necessarily because either side wants to initiate it, but because of a gradual deterioration. This has led us to raise the level of preparedness,” Maj. Gen. Nitzan Alon, head of IDF Operations, told Army Radio in a rare interview.