Israel Struck Target Near Damascus Airport, Syrian Media Says

Israel targeted Hezbollah arms depot, watchdog says ■ Regime-run media says attack linked to Israel's 'continued support to the terrorist organizations'

Jack Khoury
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An explosion in Syria
An explosion in SyriaCredit: Archive
Jack Khoury

>> UPDATE: Israel's Alleged Strike Signals That the World's Getting Ready to Act Against Iran

Two Israeli missiles struck a target near Damascus International Airport, Syrian state-run media said overnight on Monday, adding that no casualties or damage were reported.

The target was an arms depot belonging to the Lebanese Shi'ite movement Hezbollah, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said. According to the Lebanon-based Al-Mayadeen TV, a source said Syrian air defense systems had intercepted two missiles in addition to the ones fired at the airport.

The Syrian news agency, SANA, said the incident was linked to Israel's "continued support to the terrorist organizations in an attempt to raise their morale, following their defeat against the Syrian army." The report added that the Syrian army seized territory from rebels in the southwest. The capture of the area cut across an opposition-held finger of territory in northeastern Deraa province, where Syrian President Bashar Assad has pressed his assault despite U.S. warnings.

An American official told CNN that Israel was behind the attack in Syria last week, near the border with Iraq. According to Shi'ite militias in the region, 22 Iraqi fighters, backed by Iran, were killed in the attack, but according to the Syrian Human Rights Organization, the death toll reached 52. Syrian media accused the American coalition of the attack, but Washington denied it. The IDF refused to comment on the report.

Last month, Israel's air force planes attacked dozens of Iranian targets in Syria, including Iranian intelligence sites, military camps and arms depots, in the most extensive attack Israel has carried out in Syria in recent decades. The attack was carried out following the firing of dozens of rockets from Syria at IDF positions in the Golan Heights. Four rockets penetrated Israel and were intercepted, while the rest landed in Syrian territory. There were no casualties reported.

About two weeks after the attack, Major General Amikam Norkin said that during the incident Iranian forces stationed in Syria fired 32 rockets at the Golan Heights. According to the general, the Syrian anti-aircraft system launched more than 100 surface-to-air missiles at Israeli planes that attacked Iranian targets in the country.

In April, Israel struck Syria's T4 army base near Hama which killed seven Iranian military advisers and members of the Revolutionary Guards. Israel's air force attacked the base after Iran transferred surface-to-air missiles that reach a range of 110 kilometers.

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