Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who visited the disputed Golan Heights in the wake of an Israeli strike on alleged Iranian Quds Force "operatives" in Syria, said that the Jewish state “won’t tolerate attacks on Israel from any country in the area”.
“Any country that allows its territory to be used for attacks against Israel will bear the consequences. I stress: The state will bear the consequences… If someone comes to kill you, rise up and kill him first”, the head of the Israeli government said, citing a Talmudic verse.
The prime minister, cited by The Times of Israel, vowed to expose “every Iranian attempt to attack us and every attempt it makes to hide behind one excuse or another”. According to him, this time, the Israeli military exposed “that Iran’s Quds Force sent a special unit of Shiite operatives to Syria to kill Israelis in the Golan [Heights] using explosive drones”, but that the IDF had managed to disrupt these plans.
Earlier on Sunday, the Israel Defence Forces said that they had attacked what was described as Iranian forces and "Shiite militia targets" in Syria. However, Secretary of Iran's Expediency Discernment Council, an advisory body under the supreme leader, Mohsen Rezaee has rejected the Israeli military’s claims that Iranian forces were hit in the overnight airstrikes near Damascus in an interview with the ILNA news agency.
Israel took control of part of Syria’s Golan Heights during the 1967 Six-Day War, and formally annexed the territory in 1981. Shortly thereafter, the United Nations declared Tel Aviv’s move “null and void and without international legal effect”. In March, however, US President Donald Trump officially recognised the Golan Heights as Israeli territory, prompting international criticism.