Offbeat Britain says it supports Israel's right to defend itself against Iran

00:26  11 may  2018
00:26  11 may  2018 Source:   reuters.com

Israel seems to be preparing for war with Iran, U.S. officials say

  Israel seems to be preparing for war with Iran, U.S. officials say <p>An Israeli airstrike on the western Syrian city of Hama on Sunday killed two dozen Iranian soldiers and targeted arms recently delivered from Iran, said three U.S. officials, and is the latest sign that Israel and Iran are moving closer to open warfare.</p>"On the list of the potentials for most likely live hostility around the world, the battle between Israel and Iran in Syria is at the top of the list right now," said one senior U.S. official.

The UK’s foreign secretary on Monday expressed support for Israel ’ s military actions in shooting down a Iranian drone that entered its airspace and later attacking Iranian targets in Syria. “We support Israel ’ s right to defend itself against any incursions into its territory

“We stand by our Israeli partners in their right to defend themselves against terrorism,” Lt. “The prime minister expressed his deep appreciation for US President Obama’s support of Israel ’ s right to defend itself ,” the Prime Minister’s Office said in a release.

Theresa May et al. posing for the camera: Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May speaks to supporters during a visit to Finchley Conservatives in Barnet, London© REUTERS/Toby Melville/Pool Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May speaks to supporters during a visit to Finchley Conservatives in Barnet, London

Britain supports Israel's right to defend itself against Iranian aggression, Prime Minister Theresa May told her Israeli counterpart Benjamin Netanyahu in a phone call on Thursday.

Israel said it had attacked nearly all of Iran's military infrastructure in Syria on Thursday after Iranian forces fired rockets at Israeli-held territory for the first time in the most extensive military exchange ever between the two adversaries.

"The Prime Minister condemned the Iranian rocket attacks against Israeli forces, and said we strongly support Israel’s right to defend itself against Iranian aggression," May's office said in a statement.

Israel pulls out of race for UN Security Council seat

  Israel pulls out of race for UN Security Council seat Israel on Friday dropped out of a race for a Security Council seat in 2019 and 2020 following a campaign by Arab states at the United Nations to block the bid. The decision leaves the path clear for Germany and Belgium to take the two seats available for countries of the Western Europe and Others group when the General Assembly votes next month."After consulting with our partners, including our good friends, the state of Israel has decided to postpone its candidacy for a seat on the Security Council," said a statement from the Israeli mission.It was Israel's first attempt to win a seat at the 15-member council.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says his country wants peace but will continue to defend itself against Iran . The United States "strongly supports " Israel ' s right to defend itself , the State Department spokeswoman later said .

“ Israel is our closest security partner in the region and we fully support Israel ’ s inherent right to defend itself against threats to its territory and its people,” said US Defense Department spokesman Adrian Rankine-Galloway, according to Reuters.

The confrontation came two days after the United States announced its withdrawal, with Israel's encouragement, from a 2015 nuclear accord with Iran.

Netanyahu said Israel's air strikes were appropriate because Iran had "crossed a red line".

The British statement said May and Netanyahu "agreed it was vital for the international community to continue working together to counter Iran’s destabilizing regional activity, and for Russia to use its influence in Syria to prevent further Iranian attacks".

The British statement added that May had "reiterated our position on the Iran nuclear deal, noting that we and our European partners remain firmly committed to ensuring the deal is upheld, as the best way of preventing Iran from developing a nuclear weapon".

(Reporting by Stephen Addison; Editing by Kevin Liffey)

Iran says Israel launched Syria strikes on false 'pretexts' .
Iran on Friday condemned Israel's air raids in Syria, saying they had been launched on "invented pretexts"."Iran firmly condemns the attacks by the Zionist regime on Syrian territory," said foreign ministry spokesman Bahram Ghasemi, cited by semi-official news agency ISNA.

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