Amid new sanctions by Western countries on Iran’s Revolutionary Guard for human rights violations and other mischiefs, the multi-role organization is ramping up Syria’s air defense system, despite rampant poverty in Iran.
According to a report by the Newsweek earlier in the month, the Islamic Republic has invested tens of millions of dollars from the country's public budget for the deployment of a comprehensive aerial defense network in Syria.
Newsweek cited an unnamed intelligence source from a nation allied with the United States that the IRGC over the past two years has been “promoting the deployment of aerial defense capabilities on its behalf in Syria at a cost of tens of millions of dollars in order to deal with the Israeli airstrikes.”
Iran has played a major role in the Syrian conflict from 2011, by sending fighters and weapons to assist the Bashar al-Assad’s forces and entrench itself near Israel.
According to the source, IRGC Aerospace Force deputy commander Brig. Gen. Fereydoun Mohammadi Saghaei, is leading the air defense project.
Information obtained by Iran International revealed that the deployment of the air defense equipment was previously being carried out under the supervision of an IRGC’s Quds Force senior commander Javad Ghaffari, who was expelled from Syria last fall apparently over differences with the Russians, and now the mission is overseen by Mohammad Reza Zahedi, another Quds Force officer.