Israel announced on Sunday than it had carried out an airstrike overnight Saturday against Iranian forces and Shi’ite militias in Syria that were planning to attack the Jewish state with explosives-laden drones.
“In a major operational effort, we have thwarted an attack against Israel by the Iranian Quds Force & Shi’ite militias. I reiterate: Iran has no immunity anywhere. Our forces operate in every sector against the Iranian aggression. ‘If someone rises up to kill you, kill him first,’” Netanyahu tweeted late Saturday night, quoting the Talmudic dictum.
The Israel Defense Forces tweeted on Sunday that Quds Force commander Qassem Soleimani “commanded an attack of killer drones on Israel, Iranian Quds operatives flew to the Damascus Intl. Airport with drones & explosives, and continued to an Iranian base in Syria to prepares for an attack on israel. An attack that never happened. We attacked their base.”
Lieutenant-Colonel Jonathan Conricus, an Israeli military spokesman, told reporters “a number of attack drones,” each armed with several kilograms of explosives and highly accurate, were to have been launched simultaneously at targets in northern Israel on Thursday.
Conricus added that the drones, along with “Iranian operatives,” had arrived at Damascus airport from Iran several weeks before and were staying in a Quds Force-controlled compound in a village southeast of the city.
A monitor group said Sunday that two members of Lebanese terrorist group Hezbollah and one Iranian were killed in the attack.
Israel had no comment regarding claims by the Lebanese army and Hezbollah that two Israeli drones crashed in the Hezbollah stronghold of southern Beirut on Sunday.