Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Sunday condemned the
alleged Israeli strikes in Syria last week, while at the same time questioning
Iran's involvement in the Syrian crisis, Turkish daily Hürriyet reported.
who treated the Israeli government like a spoiled child should know
that history will not forgive Israel’s state structure," he said.
While slamming Israel for the strike, Erdogan also noted that Iran should first of all "reconsider its attitude against Syria."
is Iran doing about Syria? While considering the acts of Israel, Iran
at the same time needs to allow for common steps to be taken in the
region," he added.
Earlier Sunday, Syrian President Bashar Assad accused Israel of trying to
destabilize his country by attacking a military research base outside
Damascus last week, and said Syria was able to confront "current
threats... and aggression" against it.
Syria's state news agency
SANA said Assad made the remarks in a meeting with Saeed Jalili, Iran's
national security council secretary, at meeting in the Syrian capital.
It was Assad's first reported response to Wednesday's attack.
sources said that Israeli warplanes struck a convoy carrying
anti-aircraft missiles last Wednesday; Israel has declined to confirm or
deny the report, and western sources have speculated that the convoy's
weapons were destined for Hezbollah. Syria, which initially denied the
incident, later said the target was a scientific research facility.
quoted Jalili as reaffirming Tehran's "full support for the Syrian
people ... facing the Zionist aggression, and its continued coordination
to confront the conspiracies and foreign projects".
On Saturday, a Syrian military source told opposition website Al-Hakika
that Syrian President Bashar Assad has no intention of responding to the
purported Israeli strike on a weapons convoy last week due to the
weakened state of his army after almost two years of battling rebels
inside the country.
The Syrian president, Shi'ite Iran's closest Arab ally, is battling a
22-month-old uprising in which 60,000 people have been killed. Assad
says the rebels are Islamist terrorists funded and armed by Turkey and
Sunni Muslim Gulf Arab states.
Neighboring Israel has said it
might have to intervene to prevent Syrian chemical or advanced weapons
falling into the hands of militant groups, including Lebanon's Hezbollah
which fought a 34-day war with Israel in 2006.
Over the weekend
Iranian officials warned Israel of a harsh Syrian response to the
purported strike close to Syria's border with Lebanon. The deputy head
of the Iranian army said that the Syrian counterattack will send Israel
into a coma, Iran's state-run English-language Press TV reported.
the new era, the criminals should know that behind their every blow
lies a massive retaliatory blow, whose time, level and magnitude will be
determined by the resolve of the free and anti-hegemonic nations,”
Press TV quoted Brigadier General Masoud Jazayeri as saying.
Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani also warned Israel on Sunday of the consequences of the alleged strike.
world is witnessing a vengeance carried out by the West, particularly
the US, and some backward elements in the region against resistance," he
Larijani called on countries in the region to distance
themselves from Israel and said he believed "the Islamic awakening
movement in the region would give a proper response to the Zionist
On Sunday, The Sunday Times cited sources close to military planners as saying that Israel is considering creating a buffer zone reaching up to 10 miles inside Syria.
security fence is currently being erected from Mount Avital south to
the point where the Israeli, Syrian and Jordanian borders meet on the
southern Golan Heights, but, according to the military source, a buffer
zone is necessary to prevent daily mortar and rocket attacks.
On Saturday, Syrian television aired images of wreckage at at military research center in Jamarya north-west of Damascus, where Syrian claims Israel has struck.
of Wednesday's strike remain sketchy and, in parts, contradictory.
Syria said Israeli warplanes, flying low to avoid detection by radar,
crossed into its airspace from Lebanon and struck the Jamraya site.
diplomats, Syrian rebels and regional security sources said the Israeli
planes hit a weapons convoy heading from Syria to Lebanon, apparently
destined for President Bashar Assad's ally Hezbollah, and the rebels
said they - not Israel - hit Jamraya with mortars.
Yaakov Lappin contributed to this report.
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