Israel In First Syria Strikes Since Air Defense Upgrade: Monitor

Israel In First Syria Strikes Since Air Defense Upgrade: Monitor

Israel In First Syria Strikes Since Air Defense Upgrade: Monitor

The Syrian Foreign Ministry on Friday confirmed that Israel was behind the strikes that targeted Syrian sites south of the capital Damascus a day earlier, state news agency SANA reported.

Last week IDF sources said security personnel reported the presence of some 20,000 Iranian-trained Syrian armed forces in the Syrian Golan Heights, possibly preparing for a conflict with Israel.

Israeli troops on the Golan Heights on Friday found a number of fragments of a Syrian surface-to-air missile that was sacked during an alleged Israeli airstrike on Iranian and Hezbollah targets in Syria the night before.

Another missile hit the area of Harfa, where there is a Syrian military base, the Britain-based monitor said.

The Syrian regime claimed its air defense systems shot down all "hostile targets" late Thursday.

The army added that reports that Israeli aircraft was hit are incorrect.

Hitting nothing was still enough for Israel to spend a solid hour striking targets around south Syria and metro Damascus.

The Israeli military had made no comment on the reported strikes during which Syrian air defenses opened fire for the first time since the deadly downing of a Russian transport plane in September, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

Opposition sources say Hezbollah now plays a commanding role in the Quneitra province that neighbors Israel, where it is believed to be training allied militias and hundreds of former rebels.

Israeli air strikes inside Syrian territory have drawn criticism and recently caused tensions with Russian Federation, an ally of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. It was not immediately clear who was behind the attack but Israel has carried out dozens of airstrikes on Syria over the past years.

Moscow pinned responsibility for the downing on Israel, saying its fighter jet used the larger Russian one for cover, an allegation Israel disputed.

According to the Syrian government's TV channel, all missiles have been intercepted.

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