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Israel's Warning 'Will Teach Iran a Lesson It Will Never Forget'

02-12-2018
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Israel is warning Iran that any further military provocations will be met with severe consequences.

"If Iran continues to threaten and carry out offensive operations against Israel from Syria, Israel will teach Iran a lesson that it will never forget," warned Yisrael Katz, Israel's minister of intelligence.

The warning comes after Saturday's incident in which an Iranian drone crossed into Israeli airspace.

Israel destroyed the unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) then attacked the drone's command center deep inside Syria.

During the operation, Syria responded by launching a wave of surface-to-air missiles which managed to shoot down an Israeli F-16 fighter jet. It marked the first time in more than 30 years that an Israeli plane was shot down by enemy fire.

"This is not the first time that Syria has launched missiles at Israel Air Force planes," Katz told the London-based Arabic-language outlet Elaph. "Israel will continue to maintain aerial superiority and control the skies of the region."

Israel has repeatedly warned that it will not allow Iran to establish a military presence on its northern border for any future attacks on the Jewish state.

"Israel stresses that it will not accept an Iranian presence in Syria, damage to its sovereignty, and development and construction of missiles for Hezbollah in Lebanon by Iran," Katz said.

Israel launched a second large-scale attack, striking 12 targets inside Syria, including four Iranian installations.

"They, and we, know what we hit and it will take them some time to digest, understand, and ask how Israel knew how to hit those sites," Katz later told Army Radio.

"These were concealed sites and we have intelligence agencies and the ability to know everything that is going on there and yesterday we proved that," Katz added.

Many Middle East watchers warn Saturday's sudden escalation of tensions could be the opening salvo of decades-long hostilities that have existed between Israel and Iran.

"We are entering a stage in which it is likely we will see more clashes between Israel and Iranian forces," said Ofer Zalzberg, an analyst at International Crisis Group.

 

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