Israel Strikes Syrian Military Target After Stray Mortar Shell Explodes in Golan Heights

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File photo: IDF forces in the Golan Heights, January 28, 2015.Credit: AP

Israel struck Syrian military targets near Quneitra on Monday after a mortar shell exploded in the Golan Heights.

According to the IDF Spokesperson's Unit, the mortar was the result of errant fire from internal Syrian fighting. No rocket alarm sirens were activated and the mortar fell in an open area.

According to the Syrian military, an unmanned Israeli aircraft attacked a Syrian rocket launcher in the city of Al Baath, near Quneitra in the Golan Heights. No casualties have been reported.

Dozens of Israeli air and artillery strikes hit the Gaza Strip overnight Sunday and early Monday, reportedly wounding five Palestinians. The attack came after a rocket fired from the coastal enclave struck the Israeli town of Sderot.

A senior IDF official said the army largely targeted what they described as Hamas "infrastructure," adding that "there is no intention to escalate the situation."

The last time Israel hit targets in Syria was on July 25, after mortars exploded on the Israeli side of the Golan Heights, across from the key border city of Quneitra. The mortars were most likely a result of errant fire from the Syrian war raging across the border. No one was injured and no damage was caused.

According to Haaretz's senior military analyst, vestiges of Syrian President Bashar Assad’s hold on the Syrian Golan disappeared two years ago. The Syrian army maintains a marginal presence a distance from the border at Quneitra, and the Druze village of Khadr to the north is controlled by local militias that communicate with the regime.

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