Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has warned Russian leader Vladimir Putin that Iran is an escalating threat in the Middle East.
Russia has managed to maintain close relations with both Israel and Iran in spite of the regional rivalry between those states.
Iran is attempting to establish a permanent presence in war-torn Syria and already has a high degree of control over Iraq, Yemen and Lebanon, Netanyahu said in comments carried by Russian state news agency TASS.
Israel had long been concerned that Iran could be developing a nuclear weapon that could be used against the Jewish state.
Mr. Netanyahu accused Iran of filling a vacuum created by the withdrawal of the extremist organisation Islamic State, according to comments carried by Israel’s Channel 2.
The Iranian presence in Syria is a threat to Israel, the Middle East and the world peace, Mr. Netanyahu said.
A branch of the Iranian military, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, said in a statement that it had no plans to conduct military operations outside Iran’s borders.
The Iranian comments came a few days after comments by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, that the two countries were planning joint operations against Kurdish militants in the region. (dpa/NAN)
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