Hezbollah warns Israel against strikes in Syria

28 January, 2019 12:00 AM printer

BEIRUT: The chief of Lebanon’s Hezbollah movement has warned Israel against continuing strikes in Syria targeting mainly Iranian positions, saying it could fuel war in the region, reports AFP.

Israel’s army has since 2013 claimed hundreds of attacks on what it says are Iranian military targets and arms deliveries to Tehran-backed Hezbollah, with the goal of stopping its main enemy Iran from entrenching itself militarily in neighbouring Syria.

In the latest strikes nearly a week ago 21 people were killed, the majority of them Iranians, according to the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitor.

Addressing Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu directly, Hassan Nasrallah said Saturday in an interview with al-Mayadeen television: “Don’t make an error of judgement and don’t lead the region towards war or a major clash.” 

“At any moment the Syrian leadership and the axis of resistance can take a decision to deal with the Israeli aggression in a different manner,” he said, referring to the alliance between Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s government, Iran and its ally Hezbollah.

When asked whether a retaliation could take the form of air strikes on Tel Aviv, Nasrallah said “anything is possible”, adding that Hezbollah possessed “high-precision missiles” capable of hitting anywhere in Israel.

The Israeli army announced the strikes against facilities it said belonged to the Iranian Revolutionary Guards’ Quds Force on Monday as they were occurring.

It said they were in response to a medium-range missile the Quds Force fired from Syria at the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights on Sunday, which Israeli air defences intercepted.

Israel has caried out hundreds of air strikes in Syria and its warplanes have been targeted by anti-aircraft fire during such raids, but it has rarely faced surface-to-surface missile fire in response.