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Syria, Iran condemn Israel over Damascus airstrikes

Jewish state denounced as being ‘in the same trench’ as Islamists; Tehran warns warmongering will backfire’

Syrian Foreign Minister Wallid al-Moallem speaks to the UN General Assembly on October 1 (photo credit: UNGA video screenshot)
Syrian Foreign Minister Wallid al-Moallem speaks to the UN General Assembly on October 1 (photo credit: UNGA video screenshot)

The Syrian and Iranian foreign ministries castigated Israel for airstrikes on two areas near Damascus, calling it an act of aggression that proved Israel was “in the same trench” with extremist groups fighting the Syrian government.

Warplanes bombed the two areas Sunday, striking near Damascus’s international airport as well as outside a town close to the Lebanese border. The Syrian government said the attacks caused material damage, and said Israel was behind them. Israel has not commented on the strikes.

Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Moallem claimed Israel was trying to compensate for losses incurred by Islamic extremist groups in Syria at the hands of the Syrian army. He did not elaborate.

He spoke Monday at a joint news conference in Tehran with his Iranian counterpart, Mohammad Javad Zarif.

Iranian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Marziyeh Afkham also denounced the unconfirmed Israeli airstrikes, the Fars news agency reported, and accused Israel of collaborating with rebel groups against the “oppressed people” of Syria.

“The Zionist regime intends to misuse Syria’s critical conditions, but the consequences of warmongerings will backfire on the regime,” Afkham said.

A picture said to show a fireball after an alleged Israeli strike on sites inside Syria on December 7, 2014. (Screen capture: Channel 2)
A picture said to show a fireball after an alleged Israeli strike on sites inside Syria on December 7, 2014. (Screen capture: Channel 2)

Arabic media reported Monday that two alleged Israeli airstrikes the day before had targeted advanced Russian-made air-defense missiles bound for Hezbollah.

The reports said that eight Israeli fighter jets were involved in the attacks, one of which took place near Damascus international airport and the other at an airfield in the Dimas area, northwest of the Syrian capital and near the Lebanese border.

Israel has reportedly carried out several airstrikes in Syria since the revolt against President Bashar Assad began in March 2011. Most of the strikes were said to have targeted sophisticated weapons systems, including Russian- and Iranian-made anti-aircraft batteries, believed to have been slated for delivery to Lebanon’s Hezbollah terrorist group, a staunch ally of Assad and Iran.

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