Secretary of Iran’s Expediency Council, Mohsen Rezai has said on February 20 that “Iran will level Tel Aviv to the ground if Israel takes any measure [against Iran].”
He was speaking at an official Islamic Revolution Guard Corps (IRGC) ceremony.
The statement by Rezai, a former commander of the Islamic Revolution Guard Corps (IRGC), was made as a reaction to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who had said on Sunday February 18: “Israel could act against Iran if necessary.”
Netanyahu made the statement at a security conference in Munich while showing a piece from “an Iranian drone” downed in Israel.
Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif in his address at the same conference characterized Netanyahu’s speech as “a cartoonish circus, which does not even deserve a response.”
Israel had expressed serious concern about “the establishment of Iran’s military presence in Syria” several months ago, when it accused Tehran of setting up a factory to manufacture “precision missiles” for the Lebanese Hezbollah.
Damascus and Tehran have said that Iran’s military presence in Syria is legitimate and based on mutual agreements.
Ali Akbar Velayati, Iranian leader Ali Khamenei’s senior adviser for international affairs said last week that Iran’s military presence in Syria would continue based on those agreements.
According to a Mehr News Agency report, Rezai in his reaction to Netanyahu’s statement said: “We tell Israelis that they cannot do a damn thing.”
“If you decide to do anything, we would level Tel Aviv to the ground, and you will not have time even to escape,” Said Rezai.
Rezai was also a presidential candidate twice; in 2009 and 2013.
Iranian officials, including a former president, members of the Parliament and the commander of IRGC have repeatedly threatened to totally demolish Tel Aviv; a threat that led Israel to view Iran as an enemy of its existence.
Quds Force Commander Qassem Soleimani said on Wednesday February 14 at a commemoration ceremony in Tehran marking the death anniversary of Lebanese militant Imad Mughniyeh: “The revenge for Mughniyeh’s blood will not be firing a missile or killing one individual. The revenge would be the eradication of Israel.”
Days later even the foreign minister of Russia, Iran’s ally in the region, reacted negatively to this comment.
Sergey Lavrov said on Monday in the presence of his Iranian counterpart in Kremlin sponsored conference that Soleimani’s comment about “Israel’s eradication” was “unacceptable.”