Israel not optimistic about Syria cease-fire

A U.N. observer atop Mount Bental on the Israeli side of the border with Syria, near the city of Quneitra, May 30, 2015. (Yossi Zamir/Flash90)

A UN observer atop Mount Bental on the Israeli side of the border with Syria, near the city of Quneitra, May 30, 2015. (Yossi Zamir/Flash90)

(JTA) – Israel’s defense minister said he does not expect the newly negotiated Syria cease-fire to succeed.

Moshe Ya’alon said Monday in a statement he is skeptical about the cease-fire, which the United States and Russia announced earlier in the day, because the Islamic State and Al-Nusra Front, two of the numerous factions involved in the Syrian civil war of nearly five years, were not involved in the process, Agence France Press reported.

The cease-fire is scheduled to begin Feb. 27.

Yaalon also said both Russia and the U.S. recognize Israeli freedom of action in Syria.

“Israeli action is based on a single principle: self-defense,” the statement said, according to AFP.

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