Israel has made it clear to Russia that it will continue to act in Syria to protect its interests when necessary, and will not coordinate activities such as retaliating to Syrian cross-border fire with Moscow, Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon said Tuesday.
He spoke a day after Russian President Vladimir Putin expressed "concern" over Israeli strikes in Syria, and two days after IDF artillery units struck two Assad regime artillery positions in response to stray, cross-border Syrian fire that struck the Golan Heights.
During visit to Gaza-border communities, Ya'alon said, "Prime Minister Netanyahu made it clear to president Putin that we are not involved in who will control Syria. Assad or not Assad, we are not entering that discussion at all. But we have interests, and when they are threatened we act, and we will continue to act. This has been clarified to the President of Russia, and here is the result. During the [Sukkot holiday] we acted against every violation or harm of our interest… those who try to violate our sovereignty – we will strike them, and those who try to transfer advanced weapons to terror elements, with an emphasis on Hezbollah, we will strike them, and those who try to transfer chemical weapons to terror elements, we will strike them."
"We have no intention of giving up our ability to defend our interests. And I suggest that no one tests us," Ya'alon warned.