Israel admits to 2007 strike on Syria nuclear reactor
Although Israel was widely believed to have been behind the September 6, 2007, airstrike, it has never before commented publicly on it.
In a lengthy release, the military revealed that eight F-15 fighter jets carried out the top-secret airstrikes against the facility in the Deir ez-Zour region, destroying a site that had been in development for years and was scheduled to go into operation at the end of that year.
"The message from the attack on the nuclear reactor in 2007 is that the State of Israel will not allow the establishment of capabilities that threaten Israel's existence," the military chief, Lieutenant-General Gadi Eizencot, said in the statement issued on Wednesday.
"This was our message in 2007, this remains our message today and will continue to be our message in the near and distant future."
The military's announcement about "Operation Out of the Box" followed the lifting of an order that barred Israeli officials from discussing the attack for over a decade.
It also comes as scandal-stricken Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is attempts to focus attention on Iran, which is a close ally of Bashar al-Assad's Syria.
According to Israel's Channel 10 News on Tuesday, German Chancellor Angela Merkel recently warned Netanyahu that US withdrawal from the Iran nuclear accord could unleash a regional conflict in the Middle East.