Israeli Intel Minister Warns of Harsh Response If Iran Attacks

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (R) sits next to Israel's Transportation and Intelligence Minister Yisrael Katz during a test-run of the new high-speed train between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, near Lod and Ben Gurion international Airport, on September 20, 2018. (Photo by Thomas COEX / AFP) (Photo credit should read …
THOMAS COEX/AFP/Getty

TEL AVIV – Israel will respond “with full force” to an attack from Iran, Israel’s Intelligence Minister warned Tuesday after Tehran promised to avenge an incident on Iranian soil that saw 25 people killed. 

“Israel had no involvement in the Iran explosion,” Yisrael Katz said at a Likud party Succot gathering in the Negev. “But if they attack us, we will respond with full force.”

Over the weekend, an attack on an Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps parade killed at least 25 people, including a woman and a child. A local Arab separatist group claimed responsibility, but Iran said Israel, backed by Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and the United States, was to blame.

Iranian officials on Monday threatened to retaliate.

Katz also warned Hezbollah that if it attacks Israel, its leader Hassan Nasrallah will be harmed and “Lebanon will pay a heavy price and will return many generations backward.”

In addition, he addressed Iran’s military entrenchment in Syria, saying that “if the Iranian undermining does not stop, Israel will be forced to continue doing everything possible to defend itself.”

He stated that the Syrian regime was solely responsible for the downing of a Russian plane and the death of its 15 crew members.

Turning south to the border with Gaza, Katz said Israel would not tolerate the construction of terror tunnels or the launching of missiles, mortars and incendiary kites from the coastal enclave.

Katz also lamented the negative coverage of the newly inaugurated Jerusalem-Tel Aviv rail line that, so far, only reaches Ben-Gurion Airport.

“The press has been off the rails with its criticism,” he told the crowd. “The media is upset because it was the Likud that inaugurated the rail line to Jerusalem. But it will be the public who will give the answer to the press.”

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