Monday, May 13, 2019

Minister: Iran may attack Israel if US standoff escalates - Reuters and Israel Hayom Staff

by Reuters and Israel Hayom Staff

Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz says "things are heating up" in the Persian Gulf. Statement comes as U.S. bolsters military presence in the region, with Iran warning it might renew high-level uranium enrichment.

An Israeli cabinet minister warned on Sunday of possible direct or proxy Iranian attacks on Israel should the standoff between Tehran and Washington escalate.

Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz said that, in the Gulf, “things are heating up.”

The United States has increased economic and military pressure on Iran, with President Donald Trump on Thursday urging its leaders to talk to him about giving up their nuclear program and saying he could not rule out an armed confrontation.

“If there’s some sort of conflagration between Iran and the United States, between Iran and its neighbors, I’m not ruling out that they will activate Hezbollah and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad from Gaza, or even that they will try to fire missiles from Iran on Israel,” Steinitz, a member of Diplomatic-Security Cabinet, said.

Hezbollah and Islamic Jihad are Iranian-sponsored guerrilla terrorist groups on Israel’s borders, the former active in Syria as well as Lebanon and the latter in the Palestinian cities.

The Israeli military declined to comment when asked if it was making any preparations for possible threats linked to the Iran-U.S. standoff.

Israel has traded blows with Iranian forces in Syria, as well as with Hezbollah in Lebanon and Palestinian terrorists. But it has not fought an open war with Iran, a country on the other side of the Middle East.

Reuters and Israel Hayom Staff


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