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Published: Tue, March 21, 2017
World | By Ernestine Jimenez

Russian Federation summoned Israeli ambassador over airstrikes in Syria

Russian Federation summoned Israeli ambassador over airstrikes in Syria

The Russian Foreign Ministry summoned Israel's Ambassador to Moscow to protest an Israeli military strike near the Syrian city of Palmyra, news agency Interfax quoted a ministry official as saying on Monday.

The fact is that the Israeli ambassador [to Russia] was summoned for a conversation only a day after he submitted his credentials [to the Russian Foreign Ministry last Thursday], and was told categorically that this game is over.

Syria's army high command said Israeli jets attacked a target near Palmyra, in what it described as an act of aggression that aided Isis. "There will be no compromise on this issue", the defense minister stressed.

The Israeli military said it used an Arrow-2 on Friday to destroy an anti-aircraft missile fired from Syria after Israeli aircraft carried out strikes there.

Israel denied any of its aircraft was hit. It marked the first time Israel had used the Arrow missile, which has been jointly developed with the USA over years to defend against long-range missiles from Iran.

"The next time the Syrians use their air defense systems against our planes we will destroy them without the slightest hesitation", Liberman said.

Putin is unlikely to be persuaded by Israel's entreaties to rein in one of his allies, said Eyal Zisser, a professor of political science at Tel Aviv University.

The Israel Defense Forces is not commenting on the alleged air strike, neither confirming nor denying the Syrian reports.

Israel has a long record of violating Syrian airspace with impunity that stretches back to before 2011, when the country's current armed conflict began.

In April 2016, Netanyahu admitted for the first time that Israel had attacked dozens of convoys transporting weapons in Syria destined for Hezbollah, which fought a 2006 war with Israel and is now battling alongside the Damascus regime.

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