Netanyahu confirms Israeli strike on Iran target in Syria

IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eisenkott speaks at a conference at the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya

IDF Chief of Staff Gadi Eisenkott speaks at a conference at the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya

Only recently has it begun to speak publicly about thwarting the weapons smuggling from Iran through Styria into Lebanon.

"We worked with impressive success to block Iran's military entrenchment in Syria", Netanyahu said at the start of the weekly cabinet meeting in Jerusalem.

"Just in the last 36 hours the air force attacked Iranian warehouses containing Iranian weapons in the Damascus global airport. The bulk of recent attacks show how we are more committed than ever to act against Iran in Syria, as we promised".

Eisenkot, who will step down on Tuesday, will be replaced by Maj.

"We'll continue our engineering actions along the border and tracking Hezbollah's underground activities".

Citing intelligence assessments, Israel's outgoing armed forces chief, Lieutenant-General Gadi Eizenkot, told a local TV station on Saturday that Hezbollah had planned to use the tunnels to spirit "between 1,000 and 1,500" guerrillas into Israeli border communities for shock attacks in a future war. Israel, coordinating with United Nations peacekeepers in Lebanon, said it sought no escalation.

The IDF also said that the "operation stripped from Hezbollah the unique offensive ability that it had built for years as part of an attack plan into Israeli territory that it wanted to conduct to create emergency situations".

Lt Col Jonathan Conricus said the final tunnel was the largest one discovered so far - running hundreds of metres from underneath a Lebanese home and deep into Israeli territory.

Although there are more tunnels on the Lebanese side of the border, the military says this effectively marks the end of the operation.

"We have achieved the goal that we set out to achieve a month and a half ago", he said.

It is believed the tunnels were allowing militants to sneak across the border and carry out attacks.

Hezbollah and Israel last fought a war in 2006.

Hezbollah has not commented on the tunnels, the existence of several of which has been confirmed by Unifil peacekeepers.

Israel has called on the global community to impose tough sanctions on Hezbollah and act against the state within a state operation in Lebanon.

Neither Lebanon nor Hezbollah has commented directly on the end of the operation.

Israel has long called for a crackdown on the Iran-backed Hezbollah, a heavily armed mini-army that is believed to possess an arsenal of some 150,000 rockets that can reach almost all of Israel.

Israel says Iran is seeking to establish a military presence in Syria that could threaten Israeli security by trying to transfer advanced weaponry to the Hezbollah terror group in Lebanon.

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