Report: Russia helping Syria thwart Israeli attacks
Russia assisted Syria's aerial defense system in thwarting an Israeli attack near the city of Homs in western Syria, a senior Russian military official said Saturday.
Rear Adm. Vadim Kulit, who heads the Russian military's Reconciliation Center in Syria, was quoted by Russia's state-owned news agency as saying Russia's advanced BUK-M2E missile system intercepted eight missiles fired by Israeli F-16 jets.
Experts have questioned the Russian-manufactured system's ability to intercept advanced guided missiles. In addition, images and video of explosions on the ground in Homs alongside reports in media outlets affiliated with rebels in the area of the destruction of weapons warehouses indicate the airstrikes attributed to Israel hit their targets.
"Moscow was cautious in its actions against Israeli aggression against its ally in Syria because Israel has a direct line of communication with Washington and carried out all of its moves in coordination with it.
Now that Russia has a direct line of communication with the Americans, we've succeeded in confirming Washington does not give its blessing to its attacks," the Russian source said.
The source said Russian military experts were already assisting Syrian anti-tank teams in intercepting Israeli missiles in the field through the use of the Buk missile system.
"Already last week the Israelis felt the aerial defense systems that were effectively activated and intercepted all of their missiles," the source said. According to the source, Moscow had relayed a direct message to Israel on the shift in Russian policy, which would now see it provide Syria with consultants and more innovative weapons.