'Russia and US tensions over Syria dangerous for Israel'

Former Israeli envoy to UN Prosor says that a conflcit between the Americans and Russians could create "a very uncomfortable reality" for Israel.

September 26, 2016 12:18
2 minute read.
Russian President Vladimir Putin

Russian President Vladimir Putin . (photo credit: REUTERS)

The escalation in rhetoric between Russia and the United States over Syria's Civil War is creating a dangerous situation for Israel, former Israeli envoy to the United Nations Ron Prosor told Army Radio on Monday.

"We have here a dangerous situation. It is dangerous, by the way, also to [Israel], because we find ourselves right in the middle," Prosor said. "We coordinate with Russia, and the Americans are an important strategic asset for us."

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Prosor said that a conflict between the Americans and Russians could create "a very uncomfortable reality" for Israel.

The former envoy to the UN said that the level of rhetoric in recent days between the world powers is unprecedented in Syria's Civil War, however, he does not believe at this point that it will turn into a physical confrontation.

"There is a head on confrontation between the world powers who both currently maintain a presence in the arena, not through proxies," he stated. "As far as we are concerned, as a country that is in the area with these world powers, who are in the midst of an escalating conflict, the arena is complicated."
US slams Russian 'barbarism' in Syria

The United States accused Russia of "barbarism" in Syria on Sunday as warplanes supporting Syrian government forces pounded Aleppo and Moscow said ending the civil war was almost "impossible."

A diplomatic solution to the fighting looked unlikely as US and Russian diplomats disagreed at a UN Security Council meeting called to discuss the violence, which has escalated since a ceasefire collapsed last week.

Rebels, who are battling President Bashar Assad's forces for control of Aleppo, said any peace process would be futile unless the "scorched earth bombing" stopped immediately.

Capturing the rebel-held half of Syria's largest city, where more than 250,000 civilians are trapped, would be the biggest victory of the civil war for Assad's forces.

They have achieved their strongest position in years thanks to Russian and Iranian support and launched a fresh offensive for a decisive battlefield victory on Thursday. Residents and rebels say hundreds have been killed in the new strikes.

"What Russia is sponsoring and doing is not counter terrorism, it is barbarism," US Ambassador to the United Nations, Samantha Power, told the 15-member council.

"Instead of pursuing peace, Russia and Assad make war. Instead of helping get lifesaving aid to civilians, Russia and Assad are bombing the humanitarian convoys, hospitals, and first responders who are trying desperately to keep people alive."

The French and British foreign ministers also took aim at Russia, saying it could be guilty of war crimes.

But Russia defended its position.

"In Syria hundreds of armed groups are being armed, the territory of the country is being bombed indiscriminately and bringing a peace is almost an impossible task now because of this," Russian UN Ambassador Vitaly Churkin told the council.

Reuters contributed to this report.

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