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Elham AbolFateh

Middle East

Israeli PM opposes Syria ceasefire، says it will strengthen Iran

Sunday 16/July/2017 - 09:59 PM
Sada El Balad
Edited by Ahmed Moamar
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday said he opposes the deal brokered by the United States and Russia that led to an open-ended ceasefire in southern Syria، saying it does not sufficiently address Iranian military ambitions in the area، AS THE Times of Israel said.
Placing himself at odds with US President Donald Trump on the issue، Netanyahu told journalists in Paris that the agreement perpetuates Iranian plans to set up a disruptive long-term presence on Israel’s northern border، something he has repeatedly vowed that the Jewish state won’t tolerate.
The ceasefire، announced after a meeting between Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin in Hamburg earlier this month، was the first initiative by the Trump administration in collaboration with Russia to bring some stability to war-torn Syria.
“Israel is aware of Iran’s expansionist goals in Syria،” a statement from Netanyahu’s office said.
Netanyahu said that he had brought up the issue with French President Emmanuel Macron during his meeting with the French leader earlier in the day.
The prime minister said that while the plan aims to keep Iran 20 kilometers (12 miles) away from the Israeli border، it did not address Iran’s plans to cement its presence in Syria، which، he said، included the establishment of a naval and air force bases.
The premier’s comments Sunday were his first remarks explicitly condemning the ceasefire، after having gingerly endorsed the deal as it came into effect earlier this month.
Also on Sunday، a senior Israeli official strongly condemned the deal، calling it “very bad” and saying it did not take into account Israeli security concerns، the Haaretz daily reported.

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