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13 April 2018, 01:28 | Katrina Lee
For Trump and Putin, Syria Is a Battle of Competing Realities
According to a statement from the Prime Minister's office regarding the phone call, Mr. Netanyahu took the opportunity to reiterate this point to President Putin.
Israel has not accepted responsibility for the operation although the Israeli government has long made it clear that it would not allow Iran to establish a permanent military presence in Syria.
Earlier on Wednesday, Russian President Vladimir Putin urged Netanyahu in a phone conversation to do nothing to destabilise Syria. "In this context, Benjamin Netanyahu pointed out that Israel will officially celebrate Victory Day on May 9 this year for the first time". Israel maintains a policy of not commenting directly on attacks outside its borders. Tel Aviv views Hizballah, an Iranian-backed regime ally, as its biggest threat and has grown alarmed over Tehran's growing clout in Syria.
"The Syrian agenda was discussed, including recent airstrikes launched by Israeli Air Forces on the airbase Tiyas located in the Homs province", said the statement, published on the Kremlin's official website. Both countries are allied with the Assad regime, which has been endeavoring to quell an uprising since 2011 and is estimated to have killed as many as 700,000 Syrians.
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Israel has said repeatedly that it can not tolerate an extended Iranian presence in Syria and reportedly has launched air raids to keep Iran from delivering weapons to Hezbollah.
The news of the telephone call between Netanyahu and Putin appeared as Netanyahu took the stage in Israel's main Holocaust memorial event and issued a threat to Iran not to "test Israel's resolve".
However, in the wake of last week's alleged chemical weapons attack by the Assad regime, Trump appears ready to intensify USA involvement in the region.
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