Report: New Israeli Airstrikes Could Target Russian Transfer of Advanced Anti-Ship Missiles
U.S. officials told the Wall Street Journal on Thursday that another round of Israeli airstrikes could target a new Russian transfer of advanced anti-ship missiles in the near future. Israeli and Western intelligence services believe the Yakhont missiles, which have been sold by Russia to Syria in recent years, could be transferred to Hezbollah within days, the newspaper reported on its website Friday.
At the same time, the New York Times reported Friday that the Yakhont missiles have already been delivered to Syria’s armed forces. Israel has repeatedly reinforced that it would not allow the transfer of “game-changing” weaponry to Islamic terror groups such as Hezbollah.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s last-minute trip to Russia on Tuesday reportedly did not change the Russians’ intentions to also deliver the advanced S-300 anti-aircraft missile system to Syria. Together, the S-300 and Yakhont systems would pose a formidable threat to any outside intervention in Syria. The anti-ship missiles would be a serious threat to the Israeli navy, as well as the facilities above Israel’s newfound underwater gas reserves.