Israel attacks Syrian, Iranian posts as border region boils

Marie Harrington
February 11, 2018

10 de febrero de 2018, 12:43Damascus, Feb 10 (Prensa Latina) In the face Israel " s threating attacks, Iranian Ambassador to Damascus, Javad Turk-Abadi, reportedly reiterated Saturday Tehran " s ongoing support to the Syrian people to preserve their homeland " s territorial integrity and sovereignty.

"We will not allow that regime to entrench itself militarily in Syria, as it seeks to do, for the express goal of eradicating our state", Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said during a visit to Washington in December. Senior Israeli officials have acknowledged there have been more than 100 airstrikes. It urged both sides to exercise restraint and avoid escalation.

"My impression is that it seems to be contained at this point", a Western diplomat in the region told Reuters.

The Israeli military said in a statement that it "sees the Iranian attack and the Syrian response as a severe and irregular violation of Israeli sovereignty", and added that it was "fully prepared for further action".

The plane was hit and crashed inside Israel.

Israel dispatched an army helicopter to rescue its two pilots, who had ejected safely.

"Israel has carried out dozens of attacks over the past one year but this is for the first time a Syrian military has shot down an Israeli plane", she said. The frontier fell quiet by mid-afternoon.

Iran strongly rejected the claim as "ridiculous", noting that such allegations do not merit a comment.

According to experts, this is a UAV with a piston wing that resembles the US RQ-170, a stealth-capable drone and a jet engine that Iran fell in 2011.

More news: Israel launches heavy air strike in Syria after F-16 crash

The statement also warned Israel that it will respond "crushingly and seriously".

Hezbollah has sent thousands of fighters to back the troops of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

An unconfirmed report said that in the past several months, Iran has began using the base as if it were its own, and transferring weapons to allies in an attempt to build up its strength against Israel.

Katz noted that Saturday's events did not "spill over into Hezbollah", something he said was a sign of Israel's deterrent capabilities.

"I do not believe matters will develop to a regional war", the official said. "Iran stands by Syria against any foolish move by Israel", the country's foreign ministry said.

Escalation is now up to Iran, and with their hands full in Syria, it's doubtful they want to start a war with Israel.

Netanyahu said that he also spoke during the day with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who left on Saturday for a Mideast tour that will take him to Jordan, Lebanon, Egypt, Kuwait and Turkey.

Hezbollah and Israel last fought a major conflict in 2006.

Israel has long complained about the involvement of archenemy Iran, and Iranian proxy Hezbollah, in the Syria war. The targeting of the Israeli F-16 may in part have been meant to signal to Turkey and the U.S. that intervening in Syria is going to be associated with heightened costs.

Other reports by TheSundaySentinel

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