Published: Mon, January 14, 2019
Worldwide | By Myra Stephens

Netanyahu confirms Israeli strike on Iran target in Syria

Netanyahu confirms Israeli strike on Iran target in Syria

Israel acknowledged on Sunday that it carried out a weekend air strike on what it called an Iranian arms cache in Syria.

The statements marked a rare, public acknowledgment of Israeli attacks against Hezbollah and its patron Iran in neighboring Syria, where Israel is long believed to have targeted Iranian weapons shipments to the Lebanese Shiite group.

He praised the IDF chief's work against the manufacture of precision weapons in Lebanon, dismantling Hezbollah's attack tunnels during Operation Northern Shield, action against Hamas on the Gaza border and in thwarting hundreds of terrorist attacks in the West Bank.

Eisenkot told the New York Times: 'We struck thousands of targets without claiming responsibility or asking for credit'.

Netanyahu says Israel says the recent strikes prove "we are committed more than ever to act against Iran in Syria".

He said this was part of a Hezbollah plan to send as many as 1,500 fighters to infiltrate Israeli border communities during any future war.

"According to our intelligence and our assessment of the situation there are no longer any cross-border attack tunnels from Lebanon into Israel".

Netanyahu also cited an Israeli search-and-dismantle mission against suspected Hezbollah attack tunnels along the border with Lebanon that was launched in December and deemed completed on Sunday.

It reached a few dozen metres into Israel, and at 55 metres underground was the deepest as well as "the longest and most detailed" of all the tunnels the army exposed, Conricus said.

It included stairs, a rail system and a wide a passageway that allowed for the movement of equipment and a large number of forces.

"We have achieved the goal that we set out to achieve a month and a half ago", he said.

With the sixth Hezbollah tunnel discovered Saturday afternoon, Israel declared victory and announced the completion of Operation Northern Shield on Sunday.

UNIFIL, the United Nations peacekeeping force in Lebanon, was informed of the latest tunnel, Conricus said.

Israel has called on the worldwide community to impose tough sanctions on Hezbollah and act against the state within a state operation in Lebanon. It said the Iranian-backed organization Hezbollah dug.

Israel has pledged to prevent its enemy Iran from entrenching itself militarily in Syria, where it is backing President Bashar Assad's regime alongside Russian Federation and Hezbollah.

But with that civil war winding down, Israeli security officials fear Hezbollah is refocusing its attention on Israel.

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