Home Middle East Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praises Syria air strikes and warns about...

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu praises Syria air strikes and warns about Iran


IsraeliPrime Minister Benjamin Netanyahupraised the US led air strikes on Syrian targets, but warned thatIrans presence in the country further endangered it.

Early this morning, under American leadership, the United States, France and the United Kingdom demonstrated that their commitment is not limited to proclamations of principle, he said in a statement.

He added that Syrian presidentBasharal-Assad must understand that his provision of a forward base for Iran and its proxies endangers Syria.

An Israeli official said Israel was notified of the strikes ahead of time, adding they believed it was around 12 to 24 hours in advance.

Asked whether Israel had helped to choose targets, the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, added: Not to my knowledge.

A USembassy spokeswoman later confirmed to the Reuters news agency that Israel had been notified before the strikes, butprovided no further details.

Irans involvement in Syria in support of Assad has alarmed Israel, which has said it will counter any threat. The armed Iranian-backedShiitemovement Hezbollah, which has an extensive missile arsenal, last fought a war with Israel in 2006.

Syria, Iran and Russia say Israel was behind an air strike on a Syrian air base earlier this weekthat killed seven Iranian military personnel, something Israel has neither confirmed nor denied.

Russian President Vladimir Putin subsequently spoke to Mr Netanyahuand urged him to do nothing to destabilise Syria, theKremlin said in a statement.

Mr Netanyahusaid Israel would not allow Iran to establish itself in Syria, according to his office.

Israel has mounted air strikes in Syria on a regular basis, targeting suspected weapons shipments to Lebanese Hezbollah.

USPresident Donald Trump said he was prepared to sustain the response until Mr Assads government stopped its use of chemical weapons.

Reuters contributed to this report



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