Russia blasts Israel for attacking Syrian airport

Kremlin slams Israel for strike on airport, summons Israeli envoy for dressing down.

By Lauren Marcus, World Israel News

The Israeli ambassador to Russia was summoned by Foreign Ministry officials in Moscow for a dressing down over an airstrike last week that caused major damage to Syria’s main international airport.

Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Bogdanov had a stern conversation with Israeli Ambassador Alexander Ben Zvi, in which he said that Russia was not pleased with the strike on Damascus International Airport.

“Serious concern was again expressed over the June 10 Israeli air force attack on the civilian airport of Damascus, which damaged the runway, navigation equipment and buildings, and disrupted international civilian air traffic,” the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

“The ambassador was told that the justification received from the Israeli side regarding the strike … was unconvincing and that Moscow expected additional clarification,” the statement continued.

Although Israel has not taken formal responsibility for the airstrike, media and foreign governments have widely attributed the bombing to the Jewish State.

The airstrike is believed to have been triggered by Iran using the airport in order to smuggle weapons to its proxies in the region, including Lebanon-based terror group Hezbollah.

Israel recently warned Syrian President Bashar al-Assad that one of his palaces would be bombed if he continues allowing Iran to operate with impunity in his country, Saudi newspaper Elaph reported.

The Russian criticism of the strike comes on the heels of increased tensions between Israel and the Kremlin over Syrian airspace. Moscow is a staunch ally of Syria’s embattled leader, and has de facto control over the countries skies.

While Russia has generally looked the other way while Israel has carried out airstrikes on Iranian targets within Syria, recent statements from the Russian Foreign Ministry indicate that policy may change soon.

Shortly after the strike on the airport, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Maria Zakharova called on Israel to “stop this vicious practice.”