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June 24, 2019 11:24 am

IDF Raises Alert Status Following Spike in Iran-US Tensions

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Israel Defense Forces and tanks gather near the border with Gaza in southern Israel on Nov. 13, 2018. Photo: Hadas Parush/Flash90. – Israel’s defense establishment has heightened its military readiness and alert status in the wake of increased tensions between Tehran and Washington, according to a report by Israel’s Channel 12 on Sunday.

According to the report, which did not cite sources, the Israel Defense Forces has completed a series of steps to ensure preparedness in the event of an Iranian attack, whether via Iranian proxies Palestinian Islamic Jihad in Gaza and Hezbollah in Lebanon, or by Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps in Syria.

Also on Sunday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with US National Security Advisor John Bolton in Jerusalem ahead of a tripartite meeting of Israeli, American and Russian security officials in the city scheduled to begin today.

During his meeting with Bolton, Netanyahu blasted the 2015 nuclear deal with Iran signed by the Obama administration, saying, “The supporters of the Iran deal argued that the massive infusion of cash into Iran’s economy would moderate it. They argued that Iran would become inward-focused, would start nation-building. And in fact, the very opposite is happening.”

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He warned that Iran is “devouring one state after the other.”

US President Donald Trump has taken steps to withdraw the United States from the nuclear deal, and announced on Saturday that his country would apply new, “major” sanctions against the Islamic Republic, just days after suddenly cancelling a military strike on Iran in retaliation for the downing of an American surveillance aircraft on Thursday.

“Neither Iran nor any other hostile actor should mistake US prudence and discretion for weakness,” Bolton said during his meeting with Netanyahu. “No one has granted them a hunting license in the Middle East.”

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