Israeli Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman yesterday pledged that Tel Aviv would destroy Russia’s S-300 defence system in Syria if it is used against Israeli aircrafts, local media reported.
“What matters to us is that the arms protection that the Russians are transferring to Syria will not work against us,” Lieberman said in an interview with Ynet News.
“There must be one clear thing – if someone shoots at our planes, we will destroy them,” he added.This came in the wake of the Russian announcement that it had a moral responsibility to defend the Syrian regime and revealed its intention to send its S-300 defence system to Syria “very soon”.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said last week that after the joint American, British and French attack on Syria, Moscow finds itself no longer bound by “moral duty” to a previous agreement not to supply Damascus with the S-300 system.
“A few years ago at the request of our partners, we decided not to supply S-300s to Syria,” Lavrov said in an interview with the BBC.
“Now that this outrageous act of aggression was undertaken by the US, France and UK, we might think how to make sure that the Syrian state is protected,” he added.
Director of the National Security Institution of Tel Aviv University, Amos Yedlin, suggested that Israel destroys the S-300 defence system as soon as it arrives in Syria.