Tag: Iran

Israel’s army chief gave an interview to a Saudi news outlet. That’s never happened before.

JERUSALEM (JTA) — The Israeli army’s chief of staff gave the first interview by someone in his post to a Saudi news outlet.

Gadi Eisenkot told the Elaph news website Thursday that Israel is ready to share intelligence with Saudi Arabia as part of a joint effort to curb Iranian influence in the region. The interview was his first with an Arabic media outlet.

Israel and Saudi Arabia do not have diplomatic ties. Elaph is Saudi owned but based in London.

In the interview, Eisenkot called Iran “the biggest threat to the region” and said Saudi Arabia was in…

Iran and Iraq reject Israel’s offer of aid for earthquake victims

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israel offered humanitarian assistance to the victims of the earthquake that killed hundreds of people in Iran and Iraq but was turned down.

On Tuesday, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told American Jewish leaders gathered in Los Angeles that he was motivated to direct the aid by photographs of the devastation caused by Sunday’s magnitude 7.3 earthquake, which has killed at least 530 people in Iran and several in Iraq.

“I just saw the pictures of the destruction in Iran and Iraq from this week’s earthquake, and I saw these heartbreaking images of men and women and…

US security officials arrive in Israel to discuss Syria border deal

JERUSALEM (JTA) — U.S. National Security Council officials arrived in Israel for talks with their Israeli counterparts.

Representatives of other security agencies are also participating Tuesday in the discussions, which are focused on the recent U.S.-Russia cease-fire agreement for Syria as well as on Iran.

The agreement, announced in a joint U.S.-Russian statement Saturday, calls for “the reduction and ultimate elimination” of foreign fighters from southern Syria, including Iranian troops and proxies. However, it does not set a timetable.

According to an Israeli official, militias would be allowed to maintain positions as close as 3 to 4…

US-Russia cease-fire could reportedly leave Iran-backed forces within 3 miles of Israel’s border

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Iranian-backed forces in Syria could reportedly remain as close as 3 miles from Israel’s border under a recent cease-fire agreement reached by the United States, Russia and Jordan.

An Israeli official said militias allied with Iran would be allowed to maintain positions as close at 3 to 4 miles to some parts of the border while being pushed up to around 19 miles away in others, Reuters reported Monday. The positions of the rebels fighting Syrian President Bashar Assad’s regime will affect the arrangements, the anonymous official said.

The agreement, announced in a U.S.-Russian statement Saturday,…

Hamas leader visits Iran, defying Israel’s conditions on Palestinian unity

WASHINGTON (JTA) — A top Hamas official defiantly rejected Israel’s conditions for recognizing Hamas-Palestinian Authority unity, noting that the very act he was committing — an official visit to Iran — went against the conditions.

“Our presence in Iran is the practical denial of the third precondition — cutting ties with Iran,” said Saleh Arouri, the deputy chief of the terrorist organization controlling the Gaza Strip, according to Reuters, which quoted Iranian news wires.

Arouri, who was in Iran over the weekend, also committed Hamas to rejecting the other two conditions, disarming and recognizing Israel.