According to Hamas’s new leader in the Gaza Strip, the Palestinian group and the Islamic Republic of Iran restored ties five years after a fall-out related to the civil war in Syria (Reuters). Yehya Al-Sinwar said, “Relations with Iran are excellent and Iran is the largest supporter of the Izz el-Deen al-Qassam Brigades with money and arms.” Neither Hamas nor Iran have disclosed the full scale of Tehran’s backing, but funding was reduced dramatically when Hamas angered Tehran by refusing to support Syria’s President Bashar Al-Assad. Al-Sinwar added that, “The Iranian military support to Hamas and Al-Qassam is strategic,” and that the relationship had “become fantastic and returned to its former era.”
Israel claims Iran is building weapons factories in Syria and Lebanon (New York Times). During a news conference in Jerusalem with the UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said, “Iran is busy turning Syria into a base of military entrenchment and it wants to use Syria and Lebanon as war fronts against its declared goal to eradicate Israel.” The Israeli PM also said Tehran “is building sites to produce precision-guided missiles toward that end in both Syria and in Lebanon,” adding that, “This is something Israel cannot accept. This is something the UN should not accept.”
Hezbollah is involved in nearly every fight that matters to Iran and, more significantly, has helped recruit, train and arm an array of new militant groups that are also advancing Iran’s agenda (New York Times).
Also, the UAE urged Tehran and Istanbul to end their “colonial” actions in Syria (Reuters).
How Iraq War hawks can help stop Trump from going to war with Iran (New Yorker).