'Saudi airspace open for Iran attack'
LAST UPDATED: 06/12/2010 20:29
Riyadh denies 'Times' report Israeli jets okayed to fly through.
fighter jets airborne 88
Saudi Arabia will allow Israeli jets to use its airspace to bomb Iran’s nuclear facilities, the London Times reported on Saturday.
The report cited a US defense source as saying the Saudis have already done tests to ensure no jet is shot down in the event of an Israeli attack. The source added that the US State Department is aware of the agreement.
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“The Saudis have given their permission for the Israelis to pass over and they will look the other way,” a US defense source in the Gulf was quoted as saying. “They have already done tests to make sure their own jets aren’t scrambled and no one gets shot down. This has all been done with the agreement of the State Department.”
According to the report, a Saudi government source confirmed that a blind eye would be turned to Israeli jets attacking Iran.
Sources in Saudi Arabia told The Times that it is common knowledge within defense circles in the kingdom that an arrangement is in place if Israel decides to launch the raid. Despite the tension between the two countries, they said, their governments share a mutual loathing of the regime in Teheran and a common fear of Iran’s nuclear ambitions.
An Israeli attempt
to destroy Iran’s nuclear capabilities would likely target uranium
enrichment facilities at Qom and Natanz as well as a heavy water
reactor at Arak and a gas storage development at Isfahan, the report
Israeli officials refused to comment on details of a raid on Iran,
which Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has refused to rule out.
Questioned on the option of a Saudi flight path for Israeli bombers,
Aharon (Ze’ev) Farkash, who headed military intelligence until 2006 and
has been involved in war games simulating a strike on Iran, was quoted
by The Times as saying: “I know that Saudi Arabia is even more afraid
than Israel of an Iranian nuclear capacity.”
The UN Security Council passed a fourth set of sanctions against Iran
on Wednesday in the hope of diplomatically stopping Iran’s development
of a nuclear weapon.
Israel’s Foreign Ministry released a statement following the passing of
the sanctions which said that the resolution was “not enough,” and that
what was necessary now was for additional “significant steps” to be
taken by various countries and international groupings.