Israel Strikes Syria After Spillover Hits Golan Heights During Netanyahu Visit

Fourth incident of spillover from Syria into Golan Heights this week

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Israeli soldiers patrol near the border with Syria after projectiles fired from the war-torn country hit the Israeli occupied Golan Heights on June 24, 2017.
Israeli soldiers patrol near the border with Syria after projectiles fired from the war-torn country hit the Israeli occupied Golan Heights on June 24, 2017.Credit: JALAA MAREY/AFP

Errant fire from the Syrian war hit the Israeli Golan Heights on Wednesday, the Israeli military confirmed. There were no damages or casualties. Israel struck Assad regime targets soon after the incident in response.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was attending a ceremony marking 40 years since the establishment of the town of Katzrin in northern Israel at the time of the fire.

Israel will not allow for an Iranian presence in the Golan Heights, Netanyahu said during his remarks. "We are always amazed that there is still someone who says we will return the Golan," said the prime minister. "The Golan is our and the Golan will always be ours. The Golan is ours because it belonged to our forefathers, and because it was taken back by us due to Syrian aggression."

Netanyahu also threatened that, "Those who fire into our territory will encounter a swift response."

In the past week, errant fire trickled in from the Syrian Golan Heights into the Israeli side. This took place on Saturday, Sunday and Monday. No injuries or damage was reported. Israel responded to this fire by attacking Syrian military posts across the border.

Early on Tuesday, the Israeli army declared an area in the Golan Heights near the border with Syria a "closed military zone," prohibiting civilian access, following an upsurge in cross-border stray fire.

"We are not prepared to accept any amount of fire in the Golan or any other area and likely, we will not allow extremist Islam led by Iran or ISIS to open a front of terror against the State of Israel from the Syrian side on the Golan," said Netanyahu, "We will protect the Golan. We are staying on the Golan and the Golan will always remain under Israeli sovereignty."

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