Speaking during the Munich Security Conference Mr. Barak said: “I cannot add anything to what you have read in the newspapers about what happened in Syria several days ago. It's another proof that when we say something we mean it. We say that we don't think that it should be allowable to bring advanced weapon systems into Lebanon…”
The Israeli authorities did not comment on the issue shortly after the attack.
Syrian TV has broadcast images of what it said was the aftermath of an Israeli airstrike on a research facility near Damascus. Israel has implicitly admitted it was behind the raid, which allegedly targeted a weapons convoy headed to Lebanon.
The footage broadcast on Saturday by Al-Ikhbariya TV and Syrian state TV showed destroyed cars, trucks and military vehicles, and a damaged building with its windows broken and interior damaged. The video was allegedly shot at Jamraya, northwest of Damascus. The Syrian military earlier said that Israeli jets bombed the area.
Israel is braced for an immediate air strike in the event the chemical arsenal of war-torn Syria falls into the hands of terrorists. General Amir Eshel is Commander-in-Chief of the Israeli Air Force:
“No one has any idea what may happen in Syria in the near future. No one knows who will seize Syria arsenals, which include cutting-edge precision weaponry and even non-conventional weapon systems. The threat is in our backyard or, to be more precise, on our northern border.”
Prime Minister Benjamin Nentanyahu believes Israel has to stick to its pre-emption strategy if it wants to prevent the spread of Syrian chemical weapons across the Middle East:
“Just look around and mind Iran together with the puppet entities under its control. Just imagine what can happen to Syria’s WMD arsenal in the event Syria starts to disintegrate. Israel must remain strong and determined to take decisive action.”
But exactly what action? Deputy Prime Minister Silvan Shalom indicates this action would be quite tough:
“Chemical weapons in the hands of extremists and terrorists would badly upset the balance of power in the Middle East. I believe no world nation is prepared to put up with this.”
Earlier this week, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Erdogan met with his visiting Lebanese counterpart Najib Mikati. Their meeting coincided with a closed-door session of the Israeli Cabinet. This what Mr Mikati had to say after he emerged from his meeting with Erdogan:
“We have just got news that Israeli jets have attacked a Syrian military convoy. I can’t confirm or deny this report. I’m waiting for information from my country’s military.”
Other reports said the Israeli raid destroyed a Syrian research center northwest of Damascus, leaving two persons dead. Israel withheld comment. In Moscow, however, there was a prompt reaction articulated by Foreign Ministry spokesman Alexander Lukashevich:
“We are scrutinizing the available information. If the attack did take place, Israel is guilty of grossly violating the UN Charter. An unprovoked attack on a sovereign state is absolutely unacceptable. We are waiting for details which would enable us to gain a clearer understanding of what happened northwest of Damascus.”
From Israel, we have an unofficial comment fro former Israeli diplomat Alan Baker:
“The Israeli government had received intelligence reports that the Syrian convoy was carrying rockets which could be subsequently used against Israel. If these reports are to be believed, Israel was acting within its rights when it destroyed the convoy. It had to prevent the use of these rockets against its army or its people.”
Israel’s air attack on a scientific research center outside Damascus was carried out to undermine stability in Syria, President Bashar Assad said during a meeting with Iran's national security council secretary Saeed Jalili.
“This act of aggression reveals Israel`s true face. Together with other countries hostile towards Syria Israel seeks destabilization of our country”, Mr. Assad said.
President Bashar al-Assad accused Israel on Sunday of trying to destabilise Syria by attacking a military research base outside Damascus last week, and said Syria was able to confront "current threats ...and aggression" against it.
Syria's state news agency SANA said Assad made the remarks in a meeting with Saeed Jalili, Iran's national security council secretary, at meeting in the Syrian capital. It was Assad's first reported response to Wednesday's attack.
Voice of Russia, Interfax, RIA, RT, Reuters