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Iran denounces Israeli strike on Damascus airport, reaffirms support for Syria

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian

Iran has strongly condemned the Israeli regime’s renewed aggression against Syria after Friday's attack targeting the Damascus airport, reaffirming its unflinching support for the Arab country.

Foreign minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian made the remarks during a telephone conversation with his Syrian counterpart Faisal al-Mekdad on Friday, hours after an Israeli airstrike targeted the vicinity of the Damascus International Airport in the Syrian capital.

The Islamic Republic has always stood by the Syrian government and people and would continue to do so in the future, the Iranian top diplomat, who is presently visiting India, asserted.

He said the Israeli regime’s relentless attacks on Syria’s infrastructure were not only in violation of the country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, but also constituted a contravention of all international laws and humanitarian norms and principles.

Amir-Abdollahian deemed the silence of the international community and regional organizations in the face of the Israeli aggression as “pathetic and reprehensible.”

The Syrian official, for his part, expressed his country’s gratitude to the Islamic Republic and said the Syrian nation would sustain its resistance against the Zionist regime’s occupation and aggression.

Syria and the Israeli regime are technically at war due to the latter’s 1967-present occupation of Syria’s Golan Heights.

The regime maintains a significant military presence in the occupied territory, which it uses as one of the launchpads for attacks on Syrian soil.

The regime's attacks on Syria have grown significantly in scale and frequency after 2011 when Syria found itself in the grip of foreign-backed terrorism.

Referring to the Friday airstrike, Mekdad said the Israeli regime resorts to such desperate attacks to disturb the calm and stability in the region so that it can deflect attention from its domestic crisis.

He further said the attacks were meant to reinforce the remnants of Takfiri terrorist outfits, such as Daesh and al-Nusra Front, adding that the aggression would lead to nowhere.

Such incursions, the Syrian official concluded, would only strengthen the Syrian government and people’s resolve to confront occupation and terrorism.

‘Flights suspended at Damascus airport’

In the wake of the Israeli attack targeting the airport in Damascus on Friday, Syria’s al-Watan newspaper reported that the country suspended all flights at the airport.

According to the daily, the attack partly damaged the runway at the airport.

The official Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) also reported the halt in the airport’s operations but said the issue was due to a “technical” malfunction.

Earlier on Friday, for the second time this week, Syrian air defenses intercepted missiles launched by the Israeli military at targets south of the capital Damascus, bringing down most of them. 

SANA, citing a military source, said Israeli warplanes fired several missiles from the direction of the occupied Golan Heights at some targets south of Damascus at around 4:20 a.m. local time (0120 GMT) Friday, but Syrian air defenses brought down most of them.

Syria had last month urged the United Nations to issue a "clear" condemnation of the regime's relentless airstrikes on the Arab country.

In a letter to the UN Secretary-General and the president of the UN Security Council, Syrian foreign ministry said the country hoped they would "adopt a clear position on the Israeli attacks on Syrian sovereignty".

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