Netanyahu: Israel is helping defend Middle Eastern countries against Iran

Netanyahu: some Arab countries don’t care about the dead lock in the Palestinian issue, are looking for defense & security cooperation with Israel.

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September 8, 2019 07:38
2 minute read.
Netanyahu: Israel is helping defend Middle Eastern countries against Iran

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in his office . (photo credit: PRIME MINISTER'S OFFICE)

Israel is cooperating with other Middle East countries on matters of defense and security against Iran, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told BBC Arabic in an exclusive interview.

“Iran is planning attacks against us all the time and attacks across the region against many of our neighbors, so we have to act against their activities in the region,” Netanyahu told BBC world presenter Mohamed Seif El-Nasr while in London on Thursday.

Netanyahu also said that Iran is attempting to organize attacks throughout Africa, not just in the Middle East, and stressed the need for Israel to coordinate with other militaries operating in the region to avoid incidents of error during the implementation of operations.

Israel, which has admitted to hundreds of airstrikes in Syria against Iranian and Hezbollah targets, has a deconfliction mechanism with Russia, which intervened in the Syrian Civil War in September 2015, siding with President Bashar Assad, to avoid any unwanted conflict.

The relationship between Jerusalem and Moscow was strained last year after a Russian military plane was downed by Syria following an Israeli airstrike on nearby Iranian targets. Despite this incident, the IAF has largely had free reign to carry out strikes on targets deemed a threat to the Jewish state.

Russia is also active in stopping terrorist attacks and Iranian hostility at Israel’s request.

According to foreign reports, Israel has also carried out airstrikes against Shi’ite militias in Iraq in coordination with US forces who are operating in the country.

A report in The New York Times quoted US officials as saying that Israel was behind several raids that struck military targets in Iraq, including a July 19 attack that struck a base used by the Iranian Revolutionary Guards to transfer weapons to Syria.

The NYT report added that the July 19 attack was carried out from within Iraq and destroyed a load of guided missiles with a range of 200 km. (125 miles).

Netanyahu said that some Arab countries don’t care about the deadlock in negotiations with the Palestinians, but rather are looking for defense and security cooperation with Israel.

“Normalization with us is increasing,” the Prime Minister said. “I don’t think it is possible to reach other peace agreements, but the new thing is that Arab countries are realizing that we can move forward on many things, especially in the security field, and I am very happy with that.”


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