Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Syria Threatens Retaliatory Attack On Ben Gurion Airport, Satellite Images Show Damage At Damascus Airport

Syria's UN envoy threatens retaliatory attack on Ben Gurion Airport

Syria’s envoy to the United Nations warned Tuesday that if the world body did not halt Israeli strikes on his country, Syria would retaliate with an attack on Ben Gurion International Airport outside Tel Aviv.
Speaking at the UN Security Council after a series of IAF airstikes on Sunday and Monday, Bashar Jaafari said Israel was only able to act freely in Syria because it had the backing of the US, UK and France in the Security Council.
Syrian state media Sana, quoted Jaafari as saying that if the UN Security Council didn’t adopt measures stop Israel, “Syria would practice its legitimate right of self-defense and respond to the Israeli aggression on Damascus International Airport in the same way on Tel Aviv airport.”

“Isn’t time now for the UN Security council to stop the Israeli repeated aggressions on the Syrian Arab republic territories,” Jaafari said.

While Israel has repeatedly hit targets inside Syria in recent years to try to stop the transfer of arms to Hezbollah and the entrenchment of Iranian forces, Syria has rarely responded.
It’s unclear if Syria has the ability to strike at Ben Gurion airport and any attempt to do so would be viewed by Israel as a major escalation.

Satellite images released by an Israeli firm on Tuesday appeared to show extensive damage at Damascus International Airport as a result of Israeli airstrikes on Sunday and early Monday.
On Sunday, Israel reportedly conducted a rare daylight missile attack on Iranian targets in Syria. In response, Iran fired a surface-to-surface missile at the northern Golan Heights, which was intercepted by the Iron Dome missile defense system over the Mount Hermon ski resort, according to the Israel Defense Forces.
Hours later, in the predawn hours of Monday morning, the Israel Air Force launched retaliatory strikes on Iranian targets near Damascus and on the Syrian air defense batteries that fired upon the attacking Israeli fighter jets, the army said.

The photographs published by ImageSat on Tuesday indicated storehouses and radar systems at the Syrian airport were destroyed in the strikes.
Military spokesperson Jonathan Conricus said the three response sorties destroyed a number of Iranian intelligence sites, training bases and weapons caches connected to the Quds Force, the expeditionary arm of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps.

According to Conricus, one of the targets of the raids was “the main storage hub for Quds Force.”
On Monday morning, the IDF also released video footage of its airstrikes on Syrian air defenses, including on social media.

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