Israeli military vows response to Iran attack

    Israelis await PM Netanyahu's response to Iran's retaliation, which sparked fears of Middle East conflict escalation. Netanyahu convened his war cabinet as international calls for restraint intensified. Despite the attack causing minimal damage and no fatalities, rising concerns over potential open warfare remain high after Iran retaliated for an Israeli airstrike in Damascus, with Iran signalling an aversion to further escalation. U.S. President Biden has stated the U.S. won't join any Israeli counterattack.

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    Israelis awaited word on how Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would respond to Iran’s first-ever direct attack. Meanwhile the international pressure for restraint grew amid fears of an escalation of the conflict in the Middle East.

    Netanyahu on Monday summoned his war cabinet for the second time in less than 24 hours to weigh a response to Iran’s weekend missile and drone attack, a government source said.

    Military Chief of Staff Herzi Halevi said Israel would respond. He provided no details.

    “This launch of so many missiles, cruise missiles, and drones into Israeli territory will be met with a response.” – Halevi said at the Nevatim Airbase in southern Israel, which sustained some damage in Saturday night’s attack.

    The prospect of Israeli retaliation has alarmed many Iranians already enduring economic pain and tighter social and political controls since protests in 2022-23.

    Iran launched the attack in retaliation for an April 1 Israeli airstrike on its embassy compound in Damascus. Iran also signalled that it does not seek further escalation.

    While the attack caused no deaths and limited damage, it has increased fears of open warfare between the long-time foes. It has also fuelled concerns that violence rooted in the Gaza war is spreading.

    U.S. President Joe Biden have told Benjamin Netanyahu at the weekend that the United States, which helped Israel blunt the Iranian attack, will not participate in an Israeli counter-strike.

    Since the war in Gaza began in October, clashes have erupted between Israel and Iran-aligned groups in Lebanon, Syria, Yemen and Iraq. Israel said four of its soldiers were wounded hundreds of meters inside Lebanese territory overnight.


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