Israel is preparing "plans for aggression" against Syria, and Damascus should take them seriously, the official As-Soura daily said on Saturday.
On Friday, a senior Israeli security official warned that Israel would retaliate against Syrian forces in Lebanon if attacks against Israeli targets by the Syrian-backed Lebanese fundamentalist group, Hizbollah, continued.
The official also accused Syria of encouraging regional confrontation by forging ties with Iraq.
"The Syrian leader doesn't understand the dangerous consequences of his policy," said the senior official, referring to President Bashar al-Assad.
"And in a way we can find ourselves, the Syrians and the Israelis, in a war that neither one wanted," said the official, who asked to remain anonymous.
"We have the military capability to cause significant damage to Syrian forces in Lebanon without the need to invade Lebanon," he warned.
In response, As-Soura said "Israel makes threats, and we should take them seriously, because Israel has always turned to aggression to escape from internal problems.
"Israel is not satisfied just with warnings, but is preparing plans and scenarios that it will carry out if it proves necessary.
The newspaper went on to say that "the Israelis prefer to ignore the fact that Syria will never compromise on national sovereignty or on (demands for) an Israeli withdrawal from the Golan to the (demarcation) line of June 4, 1967. These are Syrian principles.
The newspaper was referring to the strategic Golan Heights, which Israel captured from Syria in the 1967 Middle East war and which is the main sticking point in the two country's failure to reach a peace accord.
In the meantime, the newspaper said, "we are consolidating our defensive military capacity because no strategy, even of peace, is possible without force" -- DAMASCUS (AFP)
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