Syria carried out large military exercises, The Middle East “will burn” in the event of a military intervention against Syria

The Syrian army has carried out military maneuvers that included test-firing of missiles and operations by its ground and air forces “similar to a real battle,” state-run media reported Monday dpa reported

According to Syrian television the military exercises took place over the weekend.

“The military exercises were aimed at testing the capabilities and the readiness of missile systems to respond to any possible aggression,” the broadcaster reported.

The test in north-eastern Syria, included the firing of long-range Scud B missiles, media reports said.

The state-run news agency SANA quoted Defense Minister Dawoud Rajha as telling the troops that participated in the maneuvers “to be in full readiness to carry out any orders given to them.”

A Lebanese military expert who spoke to dpa on condition of anonymity, said that Syria wanted to send a message to “foreign countries like the United States and Israel” that it is ready to confront any future military intervention in the country.

He added that Damascus possesses “surface-to-surface missiles such as Scuds, which are capable of hitting deep inside Israel.”

The show of strength was not necessarily intended to intimidate Israel, but rather any Western powers contemplating military intervention in Syria, the Jerusalem Post daily quoted Israeli military officials as saying Monday.

Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad has warned that the Middle East “will burn” in the event of a Libya-style military intervention in Syria.

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