Iranian authorities have issued an ominous warning to Israel, saying that it should understand that its recent "aggressive actions" in the region will have consequences, as Iraq, Syria and Lebanon have the right for self-defence.
"Israel must understand the consequences of its aggressive actions and that they come at a price", Iranian Government spokesman Ali Rabiei said at a Monday news conference broadcast by Iranian television.
Aistrikes on 'Iranian' Targets in Syria
The comments by Rabiei followed Israel's confirmation on Sunday that it had conducted airstrikes on what it described as "Iranian Quds Force operatives and Shiite militia targets" in Syria to foil a professed attack by multple drones on the Jewish state.
"Iran has no immunity anywhere. Our forces operate in every sector against the Iranian aggression. I have directed that our forces be prepared for any scenario. We will continue to take determined and responsible action against Iran and its proxies for the security of Israel", said Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
A senior Iranian official has denied that Iranian forces had been hit in the air raid.
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has, meanwhile, voiced support for "Israel's right to defend itself from the threat posed by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps".
We discussed how #Iran is leveraging its foothold in Syria to threaten Israel and its neighbors. The Prime Minister @netanyahu noted that Israel would strike IRGC targets threatening Israel, wherever they are located.— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) 25 августа 2019 г.
Alleged Israeli Drones Crash in Beirut
In a separate development, two alleged Israeli drones crashed near the Lebanese capital of Beirut on Saturday, with one of them exploding in the air and reportedly damaging the Hezbollah media centre in the city's suburbs.
The drone episode caused Lebanon's Prime Minister, Saad Hariri to accuse Israel of being a "threat to regional stability" and violating a 2006 UN resolution that ended a war between Hezbollah and Tel Aviv. Israel has yet to comment on the incident.
The movement's secretary-general, Hassan Nasrallah, said, in turn, the drones that fell over Beirut were on a "suicide mission" and pledged to "do everything" to thwart such attacks in the future. He added that the time when Israel could bomb Lebanon was "over".
Israel's Purported Strikes in Iraq
It was reported last week that Israel had carried out several strikes in Iraq, including the 19 July attack north of Baghdad that targeted a base allegedly used by Iran's IRGC.
Prime Minister Netanyahu fuelled the speculation by hinting at Israel's role in the attacks on ammunition depots in Iraq belonging to the Popular Mobilization Forces (PMF) composed of mostly Shia Muslim groups.
"We’re acting not only if required, we’re acting in very many theatres against a state that seeks to annihilate us. Obviously I’ve given the security forces the order and the operational freedom to do what is necessary in order to disrupt these plots by Iran. And obviously I’ve also led, and in many ways continue to lead, a global effort against Iran", he told Channel 9 when asked whether Israel acts in Iraq "if required".
The prime minister vowed to not give Iran immunity "anywhere", describing the Islamic Republic as a country that is "trying to establish bases against us everywhere, [including] Iran itself, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, and Yemen".
Israel, which views Iran and Hezbollah to be among its main rivals in the region, previously admitted to conducting hundreds of airstrikes against Syria in the past several years, claiming that they were aimed at countering a professed Iranian military presence in the country. While Damascus has strongly condemned the strikes as a violation of its sovereignty, Tehran has repeatedly stressed that its presence in Syria has been limited to sending advisers to help fight terrorism.