Russia's Viktorov says strikes against Syria likely connected to election

"The Israeli Ministry of Defense now issues immediate messages for each strike [in Syria] from the highest officials, we think it is totally related to the elections campaign here in this country."

ANATOLY VIKTOROV (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
ANATOLY VIKTOROV
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
Russian Ambassador to Israel Anatoly Viktorov said "Russia does not want an escalation [of tensions] between Iran and Israel."
Viktorov spoke during an interview with i24 News on Wednesday, claiming the statements coming from Israeli government officials are related to Israel's forthcoming elections.
"The Israeli Ministry of Defense now issues immediate messages for each strike [in Syria] from the highest officials, we think it is totally related to the elections campaign here in this country [Israel]," Vikttorov said.
He went on to say Russia would like to see Israel and Iran begin negotiations and that Russia has no intention of meddling with the upcoming April elections.
Recent Israeli strikes in Syria saw a reversal of the long-standing Israeli policy of not publicly commenting on who might be behind military operations outside its borders. Israel hit Iranian targets in Syria on Monday after an Iranian missile was intercepted over the Golan Heights the day prior.

Viktorov spoke to The Jerusalem Post in 2018 and said that Russia operated to ensure the survival of the Assad regime due to its concern that a failed Syrian state would lead to terrorism drifting upwards into Russia.