Syria and Russia have sent a “clear message” to Israel by summoning the country’s ambassador and warning that the “the game is over”.
Speaking on a Syrian TV channel, Bashar Ja’afari, the country’s permanent representative at the UN, said that Israel’s freedom to act in Syria’s skies is over, referring to the claim that the Syrian army shot down an Israeli fighter jet last week.
During his comments yesterday, Ja’afari said: “Russia has sent a clear message to Israel that the rules of the game have changed in Syria and its freedom to act in Syrian skies is over.”
“Putin sent a clear message,” added Ja’afari before mentioning the summoning of the Israeli ambassador to Russia by Moscow:
The fact is that the Israeli ambassador [to Russia] was summoned for a conversation only a day after he submitted his credentials [to the Russian Foreign Ministry last Thursday], and was told categorically that this game is over.
Ja’afari also claimed that when the civil war began in Syria in 2011, opposition militia groups sabotaged the anti-aircraft defence systems belonging to President Bashar Al-Assad’s regime, giving Israel freedom to operate.
Russia’s foreign ministry today said that it had summoned Israel’s ambassador over airstrikes close to Moscow’s forces near the historic Syrian city of Palmyra. The ministry “expressed concern” about the action taking place near Russian military locations.
Earlier on Friday, the Syrian army announced in a statement that Israeli fighter jets “penetrated” Syrian airspace via Lebanese territory and “hit a military target on the way to Palmyra” overnight. The statement added that the army’s air defence shot down one of the aircrafts and hit another.