NEW YORK – The chief of the Mossad on Monday warned that Iran was “closer than ever before” to Israel’s borders with Lebanon and Syria, but added that Israel was also entrenched deep in enemy territory.
Yossi Cohen said that Iran is busy arming its terror proxy Hezbollah as well as Gaza-based terror group Hamas. This is in addition to developing nuclear weapons, the intelligence head said at a ceremony for agents who received a special commendation from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
The Mossad “carries out hundreds, thousands of activities every year — some of them complicated and deep within the heart of enemy countries,” said Cohen, according to a translation by the Times of Israel, adding that the spy agency is “focused only on the top national, security and political priorities,” such as Iran.
The Islamic republic, he said, “continues with its vision of [obtaining] a significant nuclear capability, which is meant to lead it to a military nuclear capability.”
“Iran continues to work with increasing military aggression in the Middle East, closer to our borders than ever before,” Cohen said.
“Iran continues to support terrorist groups, Hezbollah and recently Hamas. Iran continues to work to transfer advanced — and accurate — weaponry to terror groups within our region,” he added.
Cohen also said the Islamic State terror group continues to pose a threat both to Israel and the entire world.
“Islamic State is continuing to challenge us,” Cohen said, adding that IS was out there to “harm us and, no less importantly, our friends in the world.”
However, he said that the Mossad is getting better at dealing with the enemy.
“The Mossad is getting stronger, with new capabilities in order to advance the future appearance of the world, with new technologies, with intelligence systems, with new forces, with human resources — all of this in order to be prepared for the challenges before us,” he said.
“The winners of the prime minister’s prize display the best within us and show to what lengths the Mossad, its people and its fighters can reach,” Cohen said.