Syria's UN envoy: Retaliation against Israel 'changed rules of the game'
Following Syria's launch of anti-aircraft missiles at IAF fighter jet that attacked targets in the country, Damascus's ambassador to the UN speaks out against Israel's actions, accusing the Jewish state of 'assisting terrorism.'
Syria's response to Israel's attack on Friday "changed the rules of the game," according to Syria's ambassador to the UN, Bashar Jaafari has said on Syrian TV.
Jaafari was speaking about Israel's attack in Syria's territory which took place early Friday morning, not on Sunday's assassination of the militia officer, which has been attributed to the IDF.
Early Friday morning, Israel's Air Force (IAF) attacked a weapon shipment on its way to Hezbollah in Syrian territory. In response, the Syrians launched anti-aircraft missile at the fighter jet, which was then shot down by Israeli Arrow missile-defense system. In an unprecedented manner, Israel then had to publicly admit to attacking targets in Syria.
Israeli Ambassador to Russia, Gary Koren, was then summoned to a meeting with Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov to answer questions over the attack.
Jaafari said that Russia had sent a clear message, saying it is not pleased by Israel's actions in Syria and that these operations must stop.
"The Russians know how to speak to the Israelis," he said, quoting the alleged Russian message: If you keep this up, things will escalate.
Jaafari warned of a clash between the IAF and the Russian air force, saying "it's enough for one incident to happen for this to blow up."
Jaafari, who also serves as the head of the Assad regime's delegation to Kazakhstan for peace talks with Syrian opposition, said that he thinks that "the Syrian military response was fitting and in line with Israel's terrorist activities. The Israelis will think a million times (before acting) from now on."
Jaafari also noted Iran's and Hezbollah's aggressive statements against Israel, saying that Israel "meddled because it and its supports felt that our (Syria's regime) battle against ISIS achieved an important triumph in Palmyra and Aleppo, and they want to assist terrorism."
Israel’s Representative to the United Nations Danny Danon denounced Jaafari's comments, calling it "the height of hypocrisy."
Danon noted that Jaafari is "an ambassador of a regime that massacres its own people," adding that "Israel will keep defending its citizens and their safety and will act against any attempt to harm it."
(Translated and edited by Lior Mor)