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Syrian navy trained Hezbollah how to fire anti-ship Yakhont missiles on Israel: sources

Special Reports | 2018-06-03 12:50:15
Syrian navy trained Hezbollah how to fire anti-ship Yakhont missiles on Israel: sources

(Zaman Al Wasl)- Syrian navy officers trained members the Lebanese Hezbollah militia how to fire the Russian anti-ship Yakhont missiles between 2012 and 2014, after Israeli reports surfaced last year saying that the Iranian proxy is believed to have obtained up to eight Yakhont shore-to-sea missiles, military experts revealed to Zaman al-Wasl Arabic.

A network of Syrian navy officers has revealed to Zaman al-Wasl a very confidential data about missile-fire training for Hezbollah militants in the coastal province of Latakia before the ‘official’ intervention of Moscow to turn the scale to favor of Bashar al-Assad and allies in the war-ravaged country.

Experts assume that Russia has no information about the training in the time. At the first years of war, number of the Russian experts has been decreased; as well their move was restricted over safety concerns.

The first training took place in the 'Regiment 200' between October 6, 2012 and March 31 2013. It included 30 Hezbollah members, including 4 commanders; one of them was identified as Lieutenant Colonel Hussein Qasem.

The second training, which held between 5/10/2013 and 31/3/2014 in the same base, had included 22 Hezbollah members, including 4 commanders.

Hezbollah’s possession of the Yakhont missiles was revealed by unnamed Western intelligence officials at the Munich Security Conference in February 2017, where world leaders and defense ministers are meeting to discuss major security issues, according to a report in the Hebrew daily Yedioth Ahronoth.  

The Russian anti-ship Yakhont missile is considered to be the best of its kind in the world. Even the most advanced missile interception systems are unable to effectively intercept and destroy it. Israeli analysts believe that, with Yakhont missiles, Hezbollah could threaten Israeli military and civilian shipping as well as Israeli oil and gas rigs in the Mediterranean Sea and even the American Sixth Fleet.

Israel has invested extensive efforts in trying to prevent weapons transfers to Hezbollah. Israel has confirmed carrying out several attacks on these weapons transfers since the beginning of the Syrian war.

Israeli security officials have previously said that advanced missiles such as the Yakhont falling into the hands of Hezbollah would constitute the crossing of a red line, and Israel is said to have targeted at least two shipments of Yakhont systems in 2013 from Syria to Hezbollah. Syria, one of Russia’s closest allies, has a large arsenal of the advanced anti-ship missiles.

In 2014, then defense-minister Moshe Ya’alon dismissed a report published in The Wall Street Journal alleging Hezbollah was in possession of at least 12 Yakhont systems, saying that Israel believed the Shiite terror group “does not have the missiles,” according to the Times of Israel.

During the 2006 Lebanon War, Hezbollah successfully struck an Israeli naval warship off the coast of Lebanon using a Chinese-made C-802 anti-ship missile, killing four sailors.

Zaman al-Wasl sources said 4 C-802 missiles were delivered from Iran to Lebanon through Syria in 2006. Hezbollah militants were also trained by Syria  in the Regiment 107 in Ein al-Sharqiyah village in Latakia.

The attack on the naval vessel surprised Israeli security officials, with an IDF officer telling the Haaretz daily at the time that “we were under the impression that we were operating beyond the range of missiles.”

The Yakhont, which was a reported range of up to 300 kilometers (186 miles), would give Hezbollah a significant upgrade over the C-802, which can reach up to a distance of 110 kilometers (68 miles).

Place of Training:


(Regiment 200 Yakhont) based in the village of Dhahr Marqiyah near Latakia city.


The first training held between (6/10/2012 - 31/3/2013)


Numbers of trainees: 30 Hezbollah members, including 4 commanders.



Colonel Hussein Taljeh led the first training.


Head of Hezbollah trainees was Lieutenant Colonel Hussein Qassem




- Major Mayad Nofal

- Major Manhal Aziz.

- Captain Engineer Iyad Ali.

- Captain Suhail Ahmed.



The second training between (5/10/2013 - 31/3/2014)


Head of the training was Colonel Ali Yusuf, the commander of the reconnaissance unit in the 200th regiment.


Numbers of trainees: 22 Hezbollah members, including 4 commanders.


Hezbollah's supervisor was Abdul Karim Haj Hassan.





- Major Samer Khazmah.

- Major Munir Ashqar.

- Captain Engineer Ayham El-Basha.


 Zaman Al Wasl, Agencies 

Zaman Al Wasl
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