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Israel calls for sanctions against Iran's missile program

2024-04-16 16:28:00, Kosova & Bota CNA
Israel calls for sanctions against Iran's missile program
Illustrative photo

Israel on Tuesday called for new sanctions against Iran as part of a response to an unprecedented airstrike that Tehran and some of its allies launched against the Jewish state.

Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz wrote on social media that he had contacted more than 30 countries to push for sanctions against Iran's missile program, as well as the designation of Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps as a terrorist organization. The United States is among those countries that have declared the latter a terrorist group.

Since October and with the expiration of UN sanctions, Washington has imposed several rounds of sanctions on Iran's ballistic missile program.

Israel, meanwhile, appears set for a military response to Saturday's Iranian attack, despite calls from world leaders to escalate the situation.

According to an official, the War Cabinet met today (Tuesday) for the third time in three days, to decide on a response to the attack.

On Monday, Israeli military officials said Tehran must pay a price for Saturday's attack of some 350 missiles and drones, many of them launched from Iranian soil.

"Iran will face consequences for its actions," Israeli military chief Lt. Gen. Herzi Halevi said, speaking from the Nevatim airbase in the country's south.

Israeli military leaders have not elaborated on the response to the Iranian attack, but Defense Forces spokesman Admiral Daniel Hagari said the response will come when Israel decides.

The harsh Israeli rhetoric comes even as its most ardent backer, the United States, has urged it to exercise restraint, arguing that the failure of the attack was itself a major victory.

"It is very clear that Iran launched over 300 drones and missiles and 99% of them were shot down," Pentagon press secretary Maj. Gen. Pat Ryder said.

White House National Security spokesman John Kirby told reporters on Monday that "Israel is in a much stronger strategic position today than it was just a few days ago."

Britain, France, Jordan and Saudi Arabia joined the United States and Israel in shooting down Iranian missiles and drones.

"The missile program that Iran has boasted about, which it has used to threaten Israel and the region, has proven to be far less effective," Mr Kirby said.

On Monday evening, the Pentagon announced a conversation between US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant. During the conversation, Mr. Austin "reiterated unwavering US support for Israel's defense and reaffirmed Washington's strategic goal of regional stability."

Senior US officials have said that during the Iranian attack on Israel, the first ever launched from Iranian soil, more than 110 ballistic missiles, 30 cruise missiles and more than 150 drones were used. According to them, Iranian forces in Iraq, Syria and Yemen were also involved in the attack.

Iran, which hailed Saturday's attack as a success, said it was in response to a suspected Israeli airstrike on the Iranian embassy compound in Syria on April 1, which killed seven Iranian Revolutionary Guard officers. , among them two senior commanders.

Several officials from Turkey, Jordan and Iraq said on Sunday that Iran warned of the attack to avoid a large number of casualties and to prevent further escalation of tensions.

But Iran's foreign ministry spokesman rejected those claims during a press conference in Tehran on Monday when he said: "there was no pre-arranged agreement between us (Iran) and any other party."

American officials rejected reports that the attack from Tehran was intended to be symbolic./ VOA

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