Iran will protect Syria’s jets from possible attacks following an agreement signed in November 2012 by the two countries, Israel Hayom reports.
Syria has already transferred jets to Iran.
In August, the U.S. threatened to launch a military strike against Syria in response to the Aug. 21 chemical weapons attack that killed more than a thousand Syrians near Damascus. The U.S. threat soon dissipated, but Syrian President Bashar Assad would likely prefer to take precautions to protect his air force, as it is by far his greatest military advantage over the rebels waging the civil war against his army.
Syria does not share a border with Iran. The shortest route between the two countries is across northern Iraq — and that is the most likely path Syria’s fleeing jets would take.
Additionally, Israel Hayom reports that Syria has already transferred large stores of chemical weapons to Iran-funded Hezbollah ahead of international efforts to force Syria to surrender the weapons.
As Syria prepared to surrender its chemical weapons in compliance with international efforts, the Saudi newspaper Al Watan quoted a Lebanese parliamentarian on Sunday as saying that Syrian President Bashar Assad has already transferred large stores of chemical weapons to his ally, Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah.
According to the report, Hezbollah now has long-range missiles capable of carrying chemical warheads. […]
Israeli officials, however, cast doubt on the report. Last week, a senior official in Jerusalem said that Hezbollah was wary of accepting chemical weapons from Syria. “Nasrallah knows that Israel would see it as a red line, and that the IDF would respond,” Israeli media sources quoted the official as saying.