Benjamin Netanyahu says Israel 'will make own decisions' amid threat of 'fierce and painful response' from Iran

Benjamin Netanyahu has thanked the UK for its support but said Israel "will make our own decisions" on Iran, Hamas and Hezbollah.

The Israeli prime minister met with the UK and Germany's foreign ministers on Wednesday amid threats of a "fierce and painful response" from Iran, if it retaliates to the weekend's missile strike, and the aftermath of an airstrike on Lebanon.

While he thanked "our friends for their support in defending Israel," Mr Netanyahu said after meeting with Foreign Secretary David Cameron, "our allies have also all types of suggestions and advice".

"I appreciate it, but I want to make clear that we will make our own decisions and the state of Israel will do all that is needed to defend itself."

Middle East latest: Striking Iran's nuclear facilities 'on the table'

Speaking after his meeting, Lord Cameron repeated that Iran's attack was "appalling" but insisted that "any response should be smart and should be designed in a way that is going to limit and try to de-escalate this conflict".

"Nobody wants to see this conflict grow and spread," he added.

'Hamas is causing' war in Gaza

The foreign secretary also called for "the eyes of the world to switch to looking at the situation in Gaza, where Hamas have held these hostages for 193 days".

"They have been offered a good deal" to release some hostages in exchange for dozens of Palestinian prisoners, he added.

"When the world sees them not taking that deal, everyone should recognise that it is Hamas that is causing this conflict to continue."

It comes after Iran's President Ebrahim Raisi said at an annual parade ahead of National Army Day: "The smallest action against Iran's interests will definitely be met with a fierce, widespread and painful response against all its perpetrators."

His comments come in the wake of Iran's direct attack on Israel over the weekend, when more than 300 drones and missiles were launched by Tehran.

'Everything is fair game'

Iran said the attack was in retaliation for a strike on an Iranian consular building in Syria earlier this month, which killed two Iranian generals.

Israeli President Isaac Herzog addressed the claims in an interview with Sky News, but said it was against "a separate building nearby".

In the wake of Iran's attack, former Mossad intelligence agency chief Zohar Palti told Sky News' The World with Yalda Hakim "everything is on the table right now" for Israel.

Asked if this included targeting nuclear facilities, Mr Palti said: "No doubt. Everything is on the table right now."

Tehran temporarily closed its nuclear sites on Sunday over "security considerations" and the International Atomic Energy Agency kept its inspectors away for two days.

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'Any revenge means bigger war'

In addition to preparing a response against Iran, the Israel Defence Forces (IDF) said on Tuesday that it had killed a Hezbollah commander during an airstrike in Lebanon.

They said the commander of the militant group's coastal sector, Ismail Yusaf Baz, was "eliminated" in a strike in the Ain Ebel area.

Hezbollah has not commented on Israel's claims of a strike, but the Lebanese foreign minister told Sky News' special correspondent Alex Crawford he hopes for a ceasefire between Hezbollah and Israel.

Abdallah Bou Habib also said about Israel's plans for a response against Iran: "Any kind of revenge is going to end up with a bigger war, probably.

"And therefore Lebanon, Syria and Jordan may be in trouble."

Ship seized by Iran

Since Iran's attack, Israel's war cabinet has met four times since Saturday to weigh up a response.

US sources told CNN that Washington is expecting Israel to carry out a "narrow and limited strike" inside the country.

Meanwhile, a ship operator said the crew onboard MSC Aries is safe after it was seized by Iran on Saturday while travelling through the Strait of Hormuz.

There were 25 crew members aboard the Portuguese-flagged vessel when Iranian Revolutionary Guards commandos repelled from a helicopter on to the deck and steered the ship toward Iran.

The hijacking came hours before Iran's missile and drone attack on Israel.