Israel attacks 12 bases in Syria

  • 11/02/2018

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says he has spoken with Russian President Vladimir Putin about Israel's offensive against Iranian targets in Syria.

Netanyahu says he informed Putin of Israel's intention to continue defending itself against any aggression and to prevent Iran from establishing a presence "in Syria or anywhere else".

Israel said one of its F-16s crashed after it came under fire from Syria. Israel responded with a "large scale attack" on 12 bases in Syria. The incident was sparked by what Israel said was an Iranian drone infiltrating its air space. A joint operation room of Syria and its allies, Iran and Hezbollah, denied the drone entered Israel airspace.

Russia backs the Assad regime and maintains a large military presence in the country. Netanyahu has met several times with Putin to co-ordinate military activities in the region.

Russia's foreign ministry appeared to criticise Israel's actions by saying it was "absolutely unacceptable to create threats to the lives and security of Russian servicemen".

Netanyahu says he also spoke to US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

Israel is also calling on the United Nations Security Council to denounce Iran's dispatching of a drone into Israeli territory.

Israel's Ambassador to the United Nations, Danny Danon, said on Saturday that "all of our warnings regarding Iran have proven correct. We will not tolerate any violation of our sovereignty."

Danon is calling on the Security Council to condemn Iran's action and "put an immediate end to Iranian provocations."

Israel says it shot down the drone after it penetrated Israeli airspace and destroyed the Iranian installation in Syria that launched it.

Hezbollah said on Saturday the "brave confrontation of the aggressing Israeli planes," including downing an F-16, ushers in a "new strategic phase" that puts an end to the violation of Syrian airspace and territories. Hezbollah, which has sent thousands of fighters to back the troops of Syrian President Bashar Assad, said the developments mean "a decisive end to old arrangements."