Defense Minister Benny Gantz on Thursday called Iran a threat to the country, the Middle East and the entire world and warned that Israel was prepared to take action to counter it.
"Iran seeks to pose a multi-front challenge to Israel, as such is building up its forces in Lebanon and Gaza, deploying militias in Syria and Iraq and maintaining its supporters in Yemen. Iran is a global and regional problem and an Israeli challenge," Gantz told Ynet.
"We need to continue to develop our abilities to cope with multiple fronts, for this is the future," he said.
"We know that when the Islamic Jihad faction in Gaza launches attacks against Israel, they do so with the support and urging of the Islamic Republic," the defense minister said.
Israel, Gantz said, is "in ongoing discussions with our U.S. allies. We now see the international community reacting to the recent Iranian aggressions and the UN Security Council is set to take up the matter as well."
The defense minister referring to a drone strike last week on an Israeli-managed oil tanker off the coast of Oman in which two British and Romanian crew members were killed. Israel and the West have said that Iran was behind the attack.
When pressed if Israel was ready to take military action against Iran, Gantz said: "Yes."
Commenting on an IAF strike on launch sites in southern Lebanon after three rockets were fired at northern Israel on Wednesday, Gantz said that the military was forced to take action as this was the third incident of rocket fire on Israel in recent months.
"Our actions overnight were meant to send a clear message that we will not accept such attacks. I hope we are not forced into further action. Lebanon is in a state of chaos caused in a large extend by the Hezbollah terror group," he said.
Of the three rockets launched from southern Lebanon on Wednesday, one landed inside Lebanese territories and two fell in the Galilee, igniting brush fires but causing no injuries.
The minister attributed to rocket fire to rogue Palestinian factions operating in southern Lebanon.