Published: Mon, March 20, 2017
Worldwide | By Sean Reid

Tensions rise as Syria retaliates against Israeli airstrikes

Tensions rise as Syria retaliates against Israeli airstrikes

Air force officials said the jets were attacked three Syrian surface-to-air missiles, one of which was intercepted by the Israeli Aerial Defence System known as "Arrow".

"The next time the Syrians use their air defence systems against our planes we will destroy them without the slightest hesitation", Lieberman said on Israeli public radio. Israel said it was "absolutely untrue" that Syria's missiles downed one jet. "Netanyahu crawled to Moscow to pleaded with Putin because he fears ISIS's defeat, which is a failure for him and a victory for the Axis of Resistance", Nasrallah said, in reference to a group of Shia/Shiite powers that includes Hezbollah, Hamas, Syria, Iran and Iraq.

Also Sunday, Chief of Staff Lt. Gen Gadi Eisenkot said that Israel is focused on preventing Hezbollah from receiving shipments of advanced weapons.

The Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced that the Israeli raids on Syria targeted advanced weapons of the Hezbollah militia, stressing that Tel Aviv will not allow the transfer of these weapons and that it will continue to target potential threats.

The Israeli military denied that any planes had been struck.

As Reuters further adds, after Israeli Air Force planes struck several targets in Syria on Thursday night, Damascus retaliated by activating its air defense systems and firing a number of missiles at Israeli jets, according to Haaretz.

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Observers saw Russian Federation summoning the ambassador as a message from Moscow echoing its control over Syria or areas that are still under the control of Bashar al Assad.

Israeli jets have been hitting targets in Syria since at least 2013, when USA officials told CNN they believed IDF jets had struck inside Syrian territory.

Assaf Orion, senior research fellow at Israel's Institute for National Security Studies, told the Times of Israel Syria's regime might be emboldened by its strengthening ties with Iran and Russian Federation.

The group said it was an Israeli drone that had carried out the strike.

A more likely scenario, several experts here said, is that the Syrian regime was so incensed by yet another successful Israeli air attack on its soil that it fired off a Scud-type ballistic missile to make a point. Israeli leaders have stated that since then, Hezbollah has built up and improved its range of rocket arsenal that can now strike deep inside Israel.

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