Trump aide defends Israeli attacks on Syria as acts of self defense

by The Region   Reuters  


U.S National Security Adviser John Bolton John Bolton on Wednesday (August 22) voiced support for Israeli strikes in recent months on sites in Syria where he said Iranian-supplied missiles and other "threatening weapons" had been deployed.

"I think that's a legitimate act of self-defence on the part of Israel," he said at a news conference in Jerusalem.

Russia, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's big-power backer, says it is committed to destroying Islamic State insurgents but has been more circumspect about the involvement of Iran, another foreign power reinforcing Damascus.

The Idlib region, a refuge for civilians and rebels displaced from other areas of Syria as well as powerful jihadist forces, was hit by a wave of air strikes and shelling this month, in a possible prelude to a full-scale government offensive.

In April, the Trump administration mustered a coalition of U.S., French and British forces to attack Syrian government facilities related to the production of chemical weapons after a poison gas attack killed dozens of people in Douma district.

Bolton said that the U.S. would respond "very strongly" if chemical weapons were used in Syria.