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Iran Threatens Retaliation Against Israel Over Syria Strike

Referring to an airstrike in Syria, attributed to Israel, which killed at least seven Iranian military personnel, a top adviser to Iran’s Supreme Leader has said that, “The crimes will not remain unanswered,” Iran’s official Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) reported Tuesday.

Ali Akbar Velayati, a foreign policy adviser to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, made the comments at the start of a two-day visit to Syria. He also said that unspecified enemies would soon be expelled from Syria.

Velayati, who is also chairman of the Islamic Awakening Assembly, also expressed pleasure at what were described as recent victories of the Syrian army and its allies, especially in the Damascus suburb of Eastern Goutha. He said that the “outrage” was especially felt by the United States and “the Zionist regime of Israel.”

He dismissed charges that the Syrian army used chemical weapons, despite images showing victims with telltale signs of such an attack, as “baseless accusations” spurred by frustration.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif similarly dismissed charges of chemical weapons attack by Syrian forces on Saturday against a rebel stronghold as claims made by the U.S. and Israel meant to “boost the morale of terrorists.”

Originally Iran claimed that four the fourteen reported killed in the airstrike against the Tiyas airbase in Syria had been military personnel, including one colonel. It has since raised the number of military personnel killed to seven.

Syria, which is Iran’s client, also warned of “dangerous repercussions” to the airstrike, which it attributed to Israel.

[Photo: Hamed Malekpour / WikiCommons]