Syria reports round of Israeli missiles near Damascus

DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) — Syrian air defenses confronted Israeli missiles aimed at an area near the capital, Damascus, shooting down several of the shells, the Syrian state news agency reported Monday.

The missiles were launched from the airspace of eastern Lebanon and targeted outposts in the Damascus region, where they caused material damage, according to SANA.

No other details or comment from Israel about the attack, which occurred shortly after 3 a.m. in Damascus, were initially available. Israel usually carries out its attacks on Syria at night.

An opposition group monitoring the war said the attacks targeted weapons depots of the Lebanese armed group Hezbollah in the eastern Qalamoun mountains, northeast of Damascus. The missiles set fires, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which had initially received no reports of casualties.

During the past decade of civil war in Syria, Israel has carried out hundreds of strikes against targets in areas controlled by the Syrian government, though it rarely acknowledges or comments on them.

However, Israel has admitted that it attacks bases of militias allied with Iran, such as Hezbollah. The Lebanese group is fighting alongside the forces of Syrian President Bashar Assad in the country’s civil war.

Israel claims that the Iranian presence on its northern border is a red line that justifies attacks on facilities and weapons inside Syria.

Monday’s attack came amid broader Middle East tensions in the Persian Gulf, where attacks have taken place as Iran’s nuclear deal with international powers collapsed and the Yemen war continued.

The United Arab Emirates intercepted a ballistic missile launched by Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen early Monday, the third such attack in recent weeks.

Leave a Comment