Monday evening, Lebanese channel MTV reported that Israel had bombed the advanced land-to-sea missiles, which had been transferred from Russia to President Bashar Assad, only after it made sure that no Russian experts were on-site.
- US sources: Israel behind Latakia attack
- Mysterious explosion hits Assad munitions cache in Latakia
- Syria naval base blast points to Israeli raid
At the same time, Syrian news site Al Hakika quoted Turkish officials who said that a senior rebel source, Malik al-Kurdi, sent a message to the US that Yakhont missiles had arrived in Syria and Assad intended to give them to Hezbollah.
The sources, close to the Free Syrian Army command in Istanbul, said that al-Kurdi, who defected from the Syrian Army in 2011, recently sent a message to the US military attaché in Ankara via a Turkish officer, asking to meet in order to pass on “important information of interest to the US and Israel regarding Hezbollah and the Syrian regime.”
According to the same Turkish sources, al-Kurdi said in his communiqué that "he had important military secrets related to the arrival of Yakhont missiles in Syria and that the regime intends to give some of them to Hezbollah." He noted that his former colleagues in the Syrian naval command had provided him with the information and the location of stockpiles.
The report claimed that the senior rebel gave the US naval attaché additional, accurate information regarding the stockpiles, and met with him again at the end of June. According to the Turkish sources, this information was what made it possible for Israel – after consultation and coordination with the US government – to determine at least three locations where the missiles were stored.
The same report said that the missiles were destroyed with three sea-to-land Harpoon missiles.
On Monday, the Russian news site RT reported that Israel used military bases in Turkey for one of the sea-to-land strikes against Syria. Apparently, this referred to the attack on arsenals in Latakia, which was generally attributed to the Israeli Air Force. Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu quickly denied the report of Turkey's involvement, calling it a complete lie.
Another article, this one appearing earlier in the week in Britian's Sunday Times, stated that the missiles which destroyed the Yakhont stockpile were launched from a Dolphin submarine. It is still unclear how the attack was carried out.
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