US intelligence eyes Iranian weapons shipments to Syria

The US is monitoring Iranian weapons shipments to Syria, suspecting they may threaten Israel.

By: World Israel News Staff

US intelligence is monitoring several cargo flights from Iran into Syria that the US suspects are carrying weapons systems to be used by Bashar al-Assad’s regime or Iranian forces, weapons that could threaten Israel.

CNN reported Wednesday that while weapons shipments into Syria are not uncommon, these flights involving Iran are under scrutiny because they occurred in the days after US airstrikes on Assad regime targets, carried out earlier this month in response to Syria’s use of chemical weapons against civilians.

There are concerns that these weapons could include advanced anti-aircraft missiles, which could hinder Israel’s ability to act against threats within Syria.

Ali Shamkhani, the Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council and former defense minister, threatened that Iran would punish Israel for the recent airstrikes on the Syrian Tiyas Airbase, in which advanced Iranian systems were destroyed and which killed at least seven Iranian soldiers.

The Syrian T4 Military Airbase, located in the Homs province, was struck by several missiles, and the Russian Defense Ministry blamed Israel for the attack. It said that two Israel Air Force (IAF) F-15 jets fired the missiles at the Syrian airbase from Lebanese airspace.

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A separate report said that the target of the air strike was an Iranian drone base. In February, an Iranian drone flying out of the T4 base was shot down by Israel. The drone was found to be armed with missiles.

The T4 Air Airbase, Syria’s largest, is home to Iranian forces, the Lebanese Hezbollah terror organization and Syrian regime forces.

Shamkhani said Israel does not realize that the “hit-and-run” era has come to an end and that the Jewish state will pay the price for such “stupidity,” Iran’s Fars news quoted him as saying.

“There will definitely be a punishment of the aggressor but naturally, the time, place and quality of the response to this vicious act depends on the Islamic Republic’s will and choice,” he added.