Israeli official justifies US-led strikes on Syria

Elias Hubbard
April 15, 2018

Punitive US-led strikes on Syria are justified because of the "murderous actions" carried out by the Damascus government, an Israeli official said Saturday.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends a ceremony marking the annual Israeli Holocaust Remembrance Day at the Yad Vashem World Holocaust Remembrance Center in Jerusalem, April 12, 2018.

To that end, Netanyahu declared, "A year ago, I made clear that Israel fully supports the decision by President Trump to stand against the use and spread of chemical weapons", in an apparent reference to previous U.S. strikes against Syria in April 2017 following a sarin gas attack attributed to Assad's regime.

It should be clear to Assad that his reckless efforts to acquire and use weapons of mass destruction, his disregard for worldwide law and his provision of a base for Iran and its proxies endanger Syria, said Netanyahu.

"A short time ago, I ordered the United States armed forces to launch precision strikes on targets associated with the chemical weapons capabilities of Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad", Trump said in a primetime televised address to the nation.

"The United States and its allies have no proof and, without even waiting for the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons to take a position, have carried out this military attack", said the foreign ministry in a statement.

Asked whether Israel helped choose targets, the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said: "Not to my knowledge". A US embassy spokesperson confirmed the Israeli official's comment to Reuters. President Trump's resolve and Israel's support remain unchanged.

On Monday seven Iranian personnel were among 14 people killed in an early-morning strike on the T-4 airbase in Syria, with regime allies Iran and Russian Federation blaming Israel for the attack.

Israel has mounted air strikes in Syria on a regular basis, targeting suspected weapons shipments to Lebanese Hezbollah.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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