Israeli official confirms airstrikes against Iranian arms in Syria
An Israeli security official on Wednesday confirmed responsibility for overnight airstrikes in Syria, saying the air force had hit a series of targets involved in Iranian arms transfers to the Hezbollah terror group.
Russia had criticized the airstrike, saying it endangered civilian flights. The comments highlighted the increasingly tense relations between Israel and Russia, which have grown strained since the September downing of a Russian plane by Syrian forces responding to another Israeli raid.
The Israeli official said the air force had attacked several Iranian targets in three main locations late Tuesday and early Wednesday. He said the targets were primarily storage and logistics facilities used by Iran to ship weapons to the Iranian-backed Hezbollah terror group.
The Israeli official said it was Syrian air defenses that endangered the civilian planes, by firing 30 missiles in response to the airstrike. He also claimed that Iranian forces are operating less than 80 kilometers (50 miles) from the Israeli border, contrary to Russian assurances.
The official spoke on condition of anonymity under standard Israeli security protocols. The IDF has not commented on the incident.
Speaking in the 177th Israeli Air Force course graduation on Wednesday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that Israel will continue to attack Iranian weapons in Syria after the Russian military accused the Jewish state of ‘provocative acts’ in Syria.
“We are taking action against it aggressively and powerfully, including in these very days.”
Netanyahu said that President Trump’s recent decision to withdraw US troops from Syria “does not change our policy. We take action in Syria and anywhere else.”