anti-aircraft weapon
anti-aircraft weapon Reuters

The Syrian army is reinforcing anti-aircraft defenses along the Syrian border with Israel in the Golan, a pro-Assad commander told Reuters on Tuesday.

According to the commander, anti-aircraft deployments have begun, and will continue in the coming days.

The commander, who is “non-Syrian,” said that the purpose in stationing the Russian-made Pantsir S1 weapon was “to renew the air defense system against Israel in the first degree.”

Israel has said repeatedly that it will not tolerate the Iranian presence in Syria.

Last month, Israel launched a large-scale attack on Iranian targets in Syria, following a barrage of rockets fired at Israeli forces in the Golan Heights by Iran from Syria. This attack came after other recent airstrikes in Syria during which Iranian personnel were killed, and which Israel was accused of carrying out.

In an interview with Russia’s RT network last month, Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad said that Syrian air defense was “much stronger than before thanks to the Russian support,” and vowed to “improve [Syrian] air defense. This is the only thing we can do, and we are doing that.”