Report: Russian delegation visit meant to stop Israeli strike
Netanyahu reportedly tells Putin during Moscow meeting that Israel plans to attack Iranian weapons factories in Syria and southern Lebanon in light of continued arms shipments to Hezbollah, with Russian delegation sent to Israel to stop it, according to Asharq Al-Awsat.
A Russian delegation that arrived in Israel earlier this week was reportedly working to prevent an Israeli attack of Iranian missile factories in southern Lebanon and Syria, the London-based Asharq Al-Awsat reported Saturday.
During their meeting in Moscow earlier this week, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reportedly updated Russian President Vladimir Putin on Israel's intentions to attack the Iranian weapon factories along with Hezbollah targets in Syria and Lebanon in light of continued arms shipments to the Shiite terror group.
After Putin and Netanyahu's meeting, a senior Russian delegation arrived in Israel for "an in-depth examination of Israeli concerns of the role Hezbollah and Iran play in Syria, particularly after Iran refused Russia's request to withdraw its men from southern Syria," the Arab newspaper reported.
Netanyahu briefed reporters after his meeting with Putin on Monday, saying Israel will not accept the presence of precision weapons on its border and "will act according to need" in Lebanon to stop it.
“We are now on the cusp of a watershed moment of whether Iran will entrench itself there or if the process will be stopped. I told Putin that if it isn’t stopped by itself, we will act to stop it. In practice, we’re already operating,” he told journalists.
Netanyahu also addressed reports that Damascus had threatened to attack Israel’s Ben Gurion International Airport if Israel carried out another military strike in Syria.
“We always take all the elements and considerations in the area into account,” he said, before accusing Iran of attempting to rattle stability in the Middle East.
“The element currently trying to change the status quo in Syria and Lebanon is one—Iran. This is an element that is actively trying to shift the arena and turn Syria into a military colony,” he asserted.
Another major topic discussed at the meeting with Putin was, Netanyahu said, the Iranian nuclear agreement. The prime minister raised before Putin Israel’s reservations, “which in many cases are reservations I have heard from Trump. I cannot guarantee what Russia’s stance will be on the matter, but they understood what will happen if corrections are not inserted (into the deal).”