Tehran Vows to Retaliate Against 'Israeli Strike' on Syria That Killed Two IRGC Officers

Israel-Syria border - Sputnik International, 1920, 12.03.2022
Tehran and Tel Aviv do not have diplomatic relations, with Iran refusing to recognise the Jewish state and Israel vowing to do its best to prevent the Islamic Republic from obtaining a nuclear weapon, among other bilateral barbs.
Iran's Permanent Ambassador to the UN Majid Takht-Ravanchi has stated that Tehran reserves "its inherent right to self-defence" to respond to Israel's alleged missile strike on Syria earlier this week, which killed two Iranian Revolutionary Guard officers.
In letters to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and the UN Security Council, Takht-Ravanchi accused Israel of violating the "sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Syrian Arab Republic" and launching "missile attacks against an area north of Damascus" on 7 March.

According to the Iranian envoy, the missile strikes resulted in "the martyrdom of two Iranian forces who were advising the Syrian military forces in its counter-terrorism efforts in Syria". The two were later identified as Colonel Ehsan Karbalayi-Poor and Colonel Morteza Saeed-Nezhad from Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).

Takht-Ravanchi noted that the Iranian advisory forces are present in Syria at its government's "official request and the invitation to provide advisory services to assist the Syrian military forces to combat terrorism, specifically the terrorist group ISIS [Daesh*]".
The Iranian diplomat described the missile strike as an Israeli "terrorist attack" and "a highly provocative and deliberate act intended at increasing tensions to an uncontrolled level and disrupting coordination among those fighting terrorism in the region, particularly ISIS".

"This […] criminal act is in violation of international law and the United Nations Charter and entails criminal responsibility for the Israeli regime and all who aided, abetted, or otherwise assisted and supported the preparation or execution of this terrorist act in any way, directly or indirectly", Takht-Ravanchi stated.

The remarks followed the Iranian Foreign Ministry condemning the killing of the IRGC officers, with spokesman Saeed Khatibzadeh pledging that Israel would "pay for this crime". He was echoed by the IRGC's Public Relations Office, which said in a statement that "undoubtedly", the Jewish state “will pay the price of this atrocity”.
The Syrian government has repeatedly attributed the constant missile attacks, which, in particular, target armaments depots in the Arab Republic, to the Israel Defence Forces (IDF), who prefer to avoid commenting on the matter.
Tel Aviv, for its part, accuses Tehran of providing weapons to Damascus as a means of attacking the Jewish state. Iran denies having a military presence in Syria apart from advisers sent in at the request of Damascus to help the Syrian government fight terrorist groups.
Tehran rejects Israel's right to exist, frequently vowing to destroy it, while Tel Aviv, aside from accusing Iran of supplying arms to Damascus, has repeatedly pledged to stop the Islamic Republic from obtaining nuclear weapons. The Iranian government insists that its nuclear programme is purely peaceful.
*Daesh (ISIS/Islamic State/IS) is a terrorist group banned in Russia and many other countries.
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