by Shlomo Cesana, Daniel Siryoti, News Agencies and Israel Hayom Staff
"If Israel wants to continue its treacherous existence, it should avoid stupid measures. If it gives Iran an excuse, Tel Aviv and Haifa will be destroyed," says Ali Shirazi, top adviser to Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei
Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei
A senior Iranian official warned Israel on Thursday to avoid any "stupid measures" that may provoke Iran, a day after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned Iran not to test Israeli resolve.
Iran's Fars news agency quoted Ali Shirazi, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's liaison to the Quds Force, as saying, "If Israel wants to continue its treacherous existence, it should avoid stupid measures. If it gives Iran an excuse, Tel Aviv and Haifa will be destroyed, razed to the ground."
The Quds Force is the elite division of Iran's powerful Revolutionary Guard Corps and is responsible for its overseas operations.
Shirazi's remarks came in response to comments made by Netanyahu in his speech at the Holocaust Remembrance Day state ceremony at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Museum in Jerusalem on Wednesday evening.
"I have a message to convey to the rulers of Iran: Do not put our resolve to the test," Netanyahu said. "I also have a message for the Iranian people: Israel is not your enemy, but the despotic regime oppressing you is. When it is gone, both our ancient peoples will be able to live in cooperation and brotherhood."
Netanyahu has repeatedly stressed that Israel will not tolerate an Iranian military presence in Syria, especially along the border.
A senior Israeli official excoriated Iran over the statement, saying it proved that "Iran's aggression and its attempts to entrench itself militarily in Syria, from where it would be able to threaten Israel and other countries, is destabilizing the region."
On Tuesday, Ali Akbar Velayati, another top adviser to Khamenei, threatened Iranian retaliation over an alleged Israeli strike on the T4 air base near Homs, which took a serious toll on Iranian drone deployment in Syria.
Israel has not commented on the strike, but Syria, Russia and Iran have attributed it to the Israeli Air Force.
Velayati described the strike as "Israel's crime" and said it "will not remain without response."
Shlomo Cesana, Daniel Siryoti, News Agencies and Israel Hayom Staff
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