Russia ‘irritated’ with Israeli strikes on Syria, strengthening missile defense systems

Putin believes that Washington is not in favor of the Israeli strikes on Syria, paving the way for Russia to publicly voice its opposition.

By Lauren Marcus, World Israel News

Russia’s Defense Ministry issued rare public statements celebrating the success of Syria’s air defense system against missiles fired by the Israeli Air Force last week, marking a shift in how Russia will respond to Israeli aerial strikes against Iranian-backed sites in Syria.

London-based Arabic newspaper Asharq Al-Awsat reported that Russia is taking a more aggressive stance against Israeli air strikes, with a source telling the outlet that U.S. President Joe Biden is not supportive of Israel’s military actions.

According to the source, Russian President Vladimir Putin believes that Washington is not in favor of the Israeli strikes, paving the way for Russia to publicly voice their opposition.

Russia has provided Syria with advanced missile defense systems, the source said, citing “7 out of 8 missiles” launched by the Israeli Air Force, which Russian media reported were successfully shot down in early July.

Putin has “run out of patience” with the Israeli strikes, the source added.

Last week, Vadim Kolet, deputy head of the Russian Reconciliation Center in Syria, said that missile defense systems gifted to Syria from Moscow had intercepted and destroyed IAF-launched missiles.

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“Two F-16 fighter jets of the Israeli Air Force made a strike with four guided missiles on facilities in Homs province from the airspace of Lebanon,” Kolet told Russian state-owned news service Tass.

“All four missiles were destroyed by the Syrian duty air defense facilities, with the use of Buk-2ME systems of Russian manufacturing.”

Syria’s foreign ministry asked the UN and the international community to condemn the Israeli strikes, arguing that they are a violation of the country’s sovereignty.

“The Syrian Arab Republic has repeatedly called on the Security Council to condemn the repeated Israeli attacks on its…territorial integrity and to take firm and immediate measures to suppress these attacks and hold Israel accountable for them,” the ministry said in a statement.

“[Syria] has reiterated its warning to Israel of the dangerous repercussions of its continuous attacks and holds it fully responsible for them,” the statement continued.

Since the onset of the Syrian civil war in 2011, Israel has carried out hundreds of airstrikes in the country.

Most of the attacks have targeted Iran-backed terror and intelligence-gathering sites.