NBC reported that two United States officials confirmed that Israel told the White House of the “forthcoming strikes in advance” on Syria’s Tiyas airbase overnight. The confirmation follows mixed reports globally claiming the U.S. carried out the air strikes.
Israel’s Defense Ministry, Foreign Ministry and the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) have not commented on the events.
Meanwhile, Russia’s Defense Ministry provided details to the media about the Israel Air Force strikes. Addressing the events on Monday, the ministry claimed that two Israeli jets carried out the strikes from Lebanese airspace.
“On April 9… two Israeli Air Force F-15 jets carried out an airstrike by two guided missiles on the T-4 airfield [Tiyas] from the Lebanese territory and without entering Syria’s airspace.” The ministry also claimed that three of eight missiles fired hit the target in the “western part of the airfield,” and that the other five were destroyed by Syrian air defense systems.
A spokesman for President Vladimir Putin referred to Israel’s strikes as a “dangerous development,” calling on Israel to provide it with details on the attack.
“This is a very dangerous development. I hope at least that the U.S. military and those of the countries participating in the coalition led by the United States understand that.”
Just a few hours later, Russia’s Foreign Ministry accused Israel of “indiscriminate and unacceptable” treatment of the Palestinians in Gaza. Russia, which has not commented on tension from the Gaza Strip over the past two weeks until now, was referring to false media reports of disproportionate response from the IDF to Palestinian riots and demonstrations on the border.
The Lebanese army reported that four Israelis jets entered its airspace for 10 minutes without providing details.
Israel carried out airstrikes on the T-4 airbase near Homs in Syria overnight Monday. The helicopter that carried out the chemical attack in Ghouta took off from the T-4 base on Saturday, carrying out an attack that killed dozen. The base was previously attacked by Israel in February of this year.
The United Nations Security Council is set to convene on Monday to discuss the chemical attacks. The meeting was called by both Russia and the U.S.
Russia denies Assad’s regime carried out the attack. The country’s Foreign Ministry claimed that the “spread of bogus stories about the use of chlorine and other poisonous substances by the Syrian government forces continues… The aim of such deceitful speculation, lacking any kind of grounding, is to shield terrorists… and to attempt to justify possible external uses of force.”
The U.S. reiterated that it holds Russia responsible. The U.S. State Department stated that “Russia ultimately bears responsibility for the brutal targeting of countless Syrians with chemical weapons. Russia’s protection of the Assad regime and failure to stop the use of chemical weapons in Syria calls into question its commitment to resolving the overall crisis. The United States calls on Russia to end this unmitigated support and work with the international community to prevent further barbaric chemical weapons attacks.”
Be sure to watch Amir’s update from Monday morning, April 9, 2018.
Amir Tsarfati, a Jewish Christian, is the founder and president of Behold Israel, a news site to correct the scarcity in trustworthy reportage on issues and events impacting Israel, and to resolve the uncertainty about who or what to believe.