Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Russia condemns Israel strike on Syria

31 January 2013, 13:24

Damascus - Russia warned on Thursday that any Israeli air strike against Syria would be "unacceptable" after the Damascus regime said a military research centre had come under Israeli fighter jet attack.

Russia's foreign ministry said it was "deeply concerned" by the Syrian claims and that it was taking "urgent measures" to clarify the situation.

"If this information is confirmed, then we are dealing with unprovoked strikes against targets located on the territory of a sovereign state, which brazenly infringes on the UN Charter and is unacceptable, no matter the motive used for its justification," said a ministry statement.

The strident Russian statement came after the Syrian army accused Israel of launching a strike at dawn on Wednesday targeting its military research centre in Jamraya, near Damascus.

"Israeli fighter jets violated our airspace at dawn today and carried out a direct strike on a scientific research centre in charge of raising our level of resistance and self-defence," the general command said.

The warplanes entered Syria's airspace at low altitude and under the radar, the army said, adding that two site workers were killed.

Six rockets

"They... carried out an act of aggression, bombarding the site, causing large-scale material damage and destroying the building," state television quoted the military as saying.

Residents said six rockets hit the complex, leaving it partially destroyed, causing a fire and killing two people.

The army, meanwhile, denied reports that an Israeli air strike had targeted a weapons convoy from Syria near the border with Lebanon.

The attack came after Israel expressed concerns that Damascus's stockpile of chemical weapons could fall into the hands of Lebanon's Shi'ite Hezbollah group, an ally of Assad's regime, or other militant organisations.

Israel, whose officials have said such that a transfer would be a casus belli and likely spark an attack, has refused to comment on the attack.

The United States, which is currently hosting Israeli military intelligence chief Aviv Kochavi, also declined to comment.

Chemical weapons hit unlikely

As well as concerns about Syria's chemical weapons stockpile, Israel has accused Syria of supplying long-range Scud missiles to Hezbollah.

It has also warned about the dangers of other advanced weaponry falling into the Lebanese militia's hands, such as anti-aircraft systems and surface-to-surface missiles.

The attack took place just days after Israel moved two batteries of its vaunted Iron Dome missile defence system to the north and at a time of rising fears that the Syria conflict could see chemical weapons leaking into Lebanon.

A former intelligence chief with Israel's Mossad spy service said the Jewish state "should make any effort to prevent any weapons systems of that kind going out to terror organisations".

In comments before reports of the attack emerged, Amnon Sofrin said Israel was unlikely to hit chemical weapons stocks from the air because of the environmental risks.

"When you go and attack a... chemical weapons depot, you're going to do unwarranted damage because every part will leak out and can cause damage to many residents.


"But if you know of a convoy leading these kind of weapon systems from Syria to Lebanon, you can send a unit to the proper place and try to halt it" on the ground, he said.

Russia has outraged Western and Arab nations by refusing to join international calls for Syrian President Bashar Assad to step down and continues to supply its Soviet-era ally with weapons.

It has vetoed three Security Council resolutions sanctioning Assad for violence that the United Nations estimates has killed more than 60 000 people since it broke out in mid-March 2011.

A top Russian official on Thursday rejected the idea of the Security Council taking action because "the Council has already made a number of important decision" on Syria.

"I do not think that in current conditions, the UN Security Council will start work on a new resolution," Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov told Russia's Interfax news agency.



Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Nigeria @ 56: Words to my green f...

A leader’s job is not to dictate, but rather to be respected, admired and be a trustee, of the land we love, with so much potential, a land which should be freer than free. Its still a long way to fufilling our destiny! Read more...

Submitted by
Isaac Asabor263
Recession: An opportunity for Nig...

The recession should be seen as an opportunity for the country’s promotion as long as we all collectively conduct ourselves in a patriotic manner, writes Isaac Asabor.  Read more...

Submitted by
Black and White

We want to imitate the whites in everything because we are ignorant of our inherent originality and content. We spend all our Naira to acquire his inventions because we so oblivious of our natural endowments that we allow him have it for free. Read more...

Submitted by
Nate Nat
Adamawa State University Mubi: A ...

ADSU integrity forum has accused the Sunday Joshua Wugira, a lawyer, of adopting unorthodox tactics by abusing his privilege by attacking the integrity of ADSU Vice Chancellor Dr. Moses Zira Zaruwa, writes a News24 reader. Read more...

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
My Country Nigeria (Part One)

Poetry by Abdulsalam Jubril.

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
Recession, dearth in leadership a...

Every leader has the opportunity to become great and making himself immortal in the lives and hearts of people for generations to come. Will Mr. President seize this opportunity?, questions Abdulsalam Jubril. Read more...