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Israel ready to act against Iran, defense minister says

Gantz calls on global response to Iranian terror but maintains that Israel will "act independently in the face of any attack or threat"

Israeli Minister of Defense Benny Gantz attends a conference for retired Israelis in the Eshkol region, southern Israel, July 13, 2021. (Photo: Flash90)

In light of attacks on an Israeli-linked ship last week and the shoring up of Iranian proxy groups on Israeli borders, Israel’s defense minister said that the army is ready to take offensive military action against Iran.

“Israel is ready to attack Iran, yes," Defense Minister Benny Gantz told Ynet in an interview on Thursday.

“Iran seeks to pose a multi-front challenge to Israel, as such is building up its forces in Lebanon and Gaza, deploying militias in Syria and Iraq and maintaining its supporters in Yemen,” Gantz told Ynet. “Iran is a global and regional problem and an Israeli challenge.”

He reiterated what he told ambassadors from the United Nations the day before, calling on a broad international response to recent Iranian terror against ships in the Middle East. 

Israel was encouraged by the reaction of the international community to the recent Iranian aggressions and the UN Security Council “to take up the matter as well.”

After a deadly drone strike last week on an Israeli-linked oil tanker in the Gulf of Oman, the United States, Britain, Romania and Israel all publicly accused Iran for the attack. 

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken promised a “collective response” to Iran for the July 29 attack in which two crewmen – a British and a Romanian national – were killed.

“We are in very close contact, in coordination, with the United Kingdom, Israel, Romania and other countries. And there will be a collective response,” Blinken said.

On Wednesday, Gantz and Foreign Minister Yair Lapid issued a joint statement implicating an Iranian commander in the deadly suicide drone attack on an Israeli-linked ship in the Gulf of Oman and called on world leaders to respond to Iranian aggression.

“Such action requires unity within the international community and action may be taken through the UN Security Council or any other international framework that will hold Iran accountable for its actions,” the statement said. 

But they both warned that Israel maintains the right to "act independently in the face of any attack or threat to its citizens and sovereignty."

The All Israel News Staff is a team of journalists in Israel.

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