Following the Western airstrikes in Syria, Arab news agencies claimed on Saturday night that fighter jets targeted an Iranian base near Aleppo. However, these reports have been denied by Hezbollah and media outlets affiliated with the Syrian government.
Syria (archive) Photo Credit: Basel Awidat/Flash 90
Arab media outlets claimed on Saturday night that unidentified fighter jets attacked an Iranian base in Syria as large explosions were reported in the area near Aleppo. Sky News Arabia said that the attack targeted a storage facility used by pro-Syrian government Iranian militias in the Mount Azzan area.
However, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights war monitor said that the explosions were reported in villages under the control of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and that it is unclear whether they were the result of an attack. Hezbollah and pro-Assad media outlets have denied that an Iranian base was targeted in an airstrike, claiming that controlled explosions were carried out in the area.
On Friday night, the US, Britain and France launched coordinated airstrikes targeting sites linked to Assad’s chemical weapons program. Using over 100 missiles, the three allies targeted eight facilities including a chemical weapons storage unit west of Homs. US Vice President Mike Pence warned Assad on Saturday against using chemical weapons again. “To be clear, the US is also ready to take additional action in a sustained way to ensure that Syria understands that there will be a price to pay if they ever use chemical weapons again,” he said from Peru.
Meanwhile, the UN Security Council rejected a resolution proposed by Russia condemning the Western military operation in Syria. At the emergency meeting that was called following the strikes, US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley defended the operation and deemed it a success. She also stressed that the US will act again if necessary, saying that Washington remains “locked and loaded.”