The Bushehr nuclear plant in Iran in December 2020
The Bushehr nuclear plant in Iran in December 2020
Photo: AFP
IDF Chief of Staff Aviv Kochavi

Israel readying for possible Iran conflict, officials say

Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Aviv Kochavi says Israel 'speeding up operational plans for dealing with Iran'; adds Jerusalem ready to act with military force if needed to prevent Tehran from developing nuclear weapons

Associated Press |
Published: 11.10.21, 12:55
Top Israeli defense officials say the country is preparing for the possibility of an armed conflict with regional arch-rival Iran and its proxies.
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  • IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Aviv Kochavi said Tuesday that the Israeli military was "speeding up the operational plans and readiness for dealing with Iran and the nuclear military threat."
    4 צפייה בגלריה
    IDF Chief of Staff Aviv Kochavi speaks at a memorial service in Jerusalem on Sunday
    IDF Chief of Staff Aviv Kochavi speaks at a memorial service in Jerusalem on Sunday
    IDF Chief of Staff Aviv Kochavi
    (Photo: The IDF Spokesperson's Unit )
    Israel considers Iran an existential threat, and has warned that it would act with military force if needed to prevent Iran from developing nuclear weapons. Last month Foreign Minister Yair Lapid said that "if a terror regime is going to acquire a nuclear weapon we must act."
    Iran insists its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only. Tehran is set to renew nuclear talks with world powers this month, after the 2015 accord to curb its nuclear program collapsed following the U.S.'s withdrawal from the agreement in 2018.
    4 צפייה בגלריה
    The Bushehr nuclear plant in Iran in December 2020
    The Bushehr nuclear plant in Iran in December 2020
    The Bushehr nuclear plant in Iran in December 2020
    (Photo: AFP)
    Addressing lawmakers at a meeting of the Knesset's Foreign Affairs and Defense committee, Kochavi said the military "continued to act against our enemies in covert operations and missions around the Middle East" during the past year.
    His remarks came following a string of reported Israeli airstrikes in Syria.
    4 צפייה בגלריה
    IR6 centrefuges in Natanz
    IR6 centrefuges in Natanz
    IR6 centrifuges in Iran's Natanz nuclear power plant
    (Photo: MCT)
    Israel has staged hundreds of strikes on Iran-linked military targets in neighboring Syria in the past decade, but rarely acknowledges its operations.
    It has said that Iran's presence near its northern frontier is a red line, and that it targets arms shipments bound for Iranian-backed Lebanese militant group Hezbollah and Iran-linked facilities in Syria.
    4 צפייה בגלריה
    IAF strikes targets in the Damascus suburbs, Nov. 2019
    IAF strikes targets in the Damascus suburbs, Nov. 2019
    An alleged IAF air strike on military targets in the Damascus suburbs, Nov. 2019
    (Photo: Screenshot )
    Speaking during a visit to a defense industry factory in the northern city of Shlomi, near the Lebanese border, Defense Minister Benny Gantz said that Israel was "working all the time to prevent war, carrying out operations, conveying messages, preventing (a military) build-up."
    In the event of war, he said, "we will be prepared to execute operations that haven't been seen in the past, with means that weren't in our hands in the past, that will harm the heart of terror and its abilities."
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