Iran condemns Israeli strikes in Syria with no mention of attacks on Israel-
Iran’s Foreign Ministry has condemned the barrage of air attacks launched by Israel into Syrian territory this week, which Israel has said was in response to the launch of 20 rockets by Iranian forces in its direction.
“The Zionist regime’s multiple strikes on the Syrian soil and the blatant violation of the country’s sovereignty, especially in recent days, was a clear act of aggression and a potent example of the crisis-seeking, lie-oriented and domineering nature of this regime, which wouldn’t like to see stability, security, and tranquillity in the region,” read a statement issued by Bahram Qassemi, the ministry’s spokesman.
On Thursday Israel claimed it had struck almost all of Iran’s military capabilities in Syria after what it said was an Iranian missile attack on the Golan Heights, which Israel annexed in 1981.
There has been no official declaration by the Iranian government that the rockets fired at the Golan Heights were done so by Iran, nor any acknowledgement from Tehran that Iranian military presence in Syria was impacted by the Israeli strikes.
In Iran, the news of the fighting was reported as a conflict between Syria and Israel, and something that didn’t involve Iran’s forces or its military infrastructure and hardware that has long helped prop up the regime of President Bashar al-Assad.
The hours of rocket fire across the Golan Heights was made “under self-made and baseless pretexts,” Qassemi claimed in his statement, adding that silence from the international community was “a green light to the regime in order to continue its acts of aggression.”
On Friday in Tehran, Iranians were preparing for a show of force from hardliners expected to take to the streets after prayers to protest the US decision to withdraw from the nuclear accord.
In a YouTube statement on Thursday-
In a YouTube statement on Thursday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Iran had “crossed a red line,” and that Israel’s action was appropriate.
Netanyahu spoke with British Prime Minister Theresa May on the phone Thursday evening. According to a readout of the call from the Israeli Prime Minister’s office, the two spoke about “Iranian aggression, developments in the region, and the situation in Syria.”
Netanyahu thanked May for condemning Iran and affirming Israel’s right to defend itself.
“Whoever hits us will get hit seven times over, Whoever prepares themselves to attack us will be attacked first.That is what we have done and that is what we will continue doing,” Netanyahu said.
According to the UK government’s readout of the conversation, May called for “calm on all sides.” The sentiment was echoed by the European Union, which released a statement urging “all regional actors to show restraint and avoid any escalation, which could further undermine regional stability.”
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani spoke to German Chancellor Angela Merkel on the phone on Thursday, the presidential website reported.
“Determined to achieve and maintain regional stability and security, Iran has always tried to de-escalate tensions in the region and under no condition does it welcome more tensions,” Rouhani is reported to have said to Merkel during their call, according to a statement on the President’s official website.
However, it wasn’t clear from the statement if he was speaking in regards to the events on the Golan or the White House decision this week to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal.
In Germany, government spokesman Steffen Seibert said that Merkel told Rouhani that Germany and its European allies would continue to work on the nuclear agreement, as long as Iran fulfilled its end of the deal.
“The Chancellor spoke in favor of talks in the extended circle of participating states with Iran on its ballistic missile program and on its regional activities, among others in Syria and Yemen,” Seibert’s statement said. Germany also condemned “the Iranian nightly attacks on Israeli military positions on the Golan Heights, and urged Iran to contribute to the de-escalation in the region.”
Israel annexed the Golan Heights in 1981 after capturing it from Syria in the Six Day War in 1967. The international community has never recognized the annexation and regards the Golan Heights as Israeli-occupied territory.