Lebanon’s Hezbollah says Israel strike in Syria will get ‘punishment’

Lebanon’s Iran-backed Hezbollah group warned Tuesday that Israel will pay for killing high-level Iranian Revolutionary Guards (IRGC) in a strike on the country’s consulate in Damascus, Syria, the day before.

Hezbollah has exchanged near-daily cross-border fire with Israel in support of its ally Hamas since the Gaza war erupted in October.

“Certainly, this crime will not pass without the enemy receiving punishment and revenge,” Hezbollah said in a statement.

The Israeli strike killed seven IRGC members including Brigadier General Mohammad Reza Zahedi and another high-ranking officer, Brigadier General Mohammad Hadi Haji Rahimi, the IRGC said.

Britain-based war monitor the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said 11 people were killed in the strikes, including eight Iranians, two Syrians and one Lebanese, all of them fighters.

Hezbollah said Zahedi was “one of the first to support, sacrifice, and persevere for many years to develop and advance the work of the resistance (Hezbollah) in Lebanon”.

The Observatory said Zahedi served as the leader of Iran’s elite Quds Force for Palestine, Syria and Lebanon, adding that he was killed along with his deputy, his aide, and the Quds force chief of staff for the same three countries.

Israel said it would not comment on the reported attack, but Iranian officials vowed a stiff response with fears of even further violence between Israel and Iran’s allies triggered by the Gaza war.

-BSS

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