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Israel Strikes Iranian Targets in Syria

Analysts weigh in on risks and highlights

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21 Jan 2019 (All day)
Israel Strikes Iranian Targets in Syria
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gave a speech Monday at a ceremony marking the opening of the Ilan and Asaf Ramon Airport in the Arava Desert north of Eilat, referencing IDF strikes on Iranian targets in Syria earlier in the day and declaring that Israel is “operating both against Iran and against the Syrian forces that are abetting the Iranian aggression. We will strike at anyone who tried to harm us. Whoever threatens to eliminate us will bear full responsibility."

The Israeli strikes came in response to a rocket that was fired at the Israeli zone of the Golan Heights and photographed by dozens of skiers and other visitors to Mount Hermon. Photos and videos of the incoming rocket, which was destroyed in-flight by an Israeli Iron Dome air defense unit, appeared within minutes on social media.

“The firing of the missile yesterday, a launch that could have killed civilians, was fired by Iranians out of Damascus within an area that we were promised that there would be no Iranians,” IDF Spokesperson Brig.-Gen. Ronen Manelis told reporters Monday morning.  “The bottom line is that such a missile fired by Iranians from an area where there they are not supposed to be is an Iranian attempt to attack Israel, to endanger civilians lives and military targets. Iran is exploiting Syria, and Syria is paying a heavy price for facilitating Iranian actions.”

“The Iranian attack on Israeli territory yesterday is yet another clear proof of the intention behind the attempts to establish Iran in Syria and the danger they pose to the State of Israel and regional stability,” the IDF said in a separate statement. “The IDF will continue to act decisively and firmly against the Iranian establishment in Syria.”

The commander of the Iranian Air Force issued a statement Monday following the strikes, which were reported as being unsuccessful by several Arab and Russian media outlets, by declaring that his forces were prepared to carry out a merciless campaign against Israel, "which will bring an end to the IDF's attacks on Syria" adding that "Our armed forces are prepared for a war that will bring the crushing destruction of Israel. We are ready for the day when we will see the end of Israel."

Here is a video giving some analysis of Iran’s relationship with Europe


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