PHOTO: A fire in northern Galilee in Israel, caused by a rocket from Syria on Thursday (EPA)


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Special: Remembering Assad’s Chemical Attacks — and Those Who Died — on August 21, 2013


UPDATE 1430 GMT: Israel has carried out another airstrike inside Syria, hitting a car in Quneitra Province in southwest Syria on Friday.

The strike killed all five men in the vehicle. Unconfirmed claims said they were in the Assad militia, the National Defense Forces, but State media said a “civilian car” had been hit by a drone.

The Syrian military also said one of the overnight Israeli air raids in Quneitra killed one soldier and wounded seven.


ORIGINAL ENTRY: Israel has attacked the Assad regime’s military with airstrikes and artillery, after rockets from Syria were fired into Galilee and the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights.

Targets in southwestern Syria, from Quneitra to West Ghouta in Damascus Province, reportedly included the 68th and 90th Brigades, the 37th Regiment, a military security branch, artillery batteries, communications antennae, and other outposts and infrastructure. Activists listed 14 military posts that were hit in the Golan Heights.

Earlier on Thursday, two rockets were launched from Quneitra Province across the border, with two landing in Upper Galilee and two in the Golan Heights, held by Israel since the 1967 Arab-Israeli War.

No group claimed responsibility, but the Israeli military said the rockets were likely fired from territory controlled by the Assad regime.

An Israel Defense Forces spokesman said, “The army sees Syria as responsible for the fire, and it will pay the price for it.” After the strikes, an IDF officer explained:

We attacked several kilometers into Syria, 5 or 6 sites with multiple targets within each site. Our attacks are much more severe this time around, in order to send a message and underlie the severity of this incident.

Other Israel Defense Forces sources blamed Islamic Jihad, with Iranian funding and direction, for the attacks. Islamic Jihad spokesman Daud Shihab firmly denied that the organization was responsible.

Unconfirmed claims said Assad troops died in the Israeli retaliation. The Syrian military denied any casualties.

There have been occasional clashes and airstrikes near the border this year. In January, an Israeli air raid killed Hezbollah and Iranian commanders and fighters, including Jihad Imad Mughniyah, the son of a famed Hezbollah commander.

The Israeli military said Hezbollah and Iran were planning to establish launch sites for rockets near the border.

See Syria Daily, Jan 19: Israeli Airstrike Kills Hezbollah and Iranian Commanders

Just over a week later, Hezbollah killed two Israeli soldiers and wounded seven when they struck a convoy with an anti-tank missile.

See Israel-Lebanon-Syria Developing: Hezbollah Missile Attack Kills 2 Israeli Soldiers, Injures 7

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