Explosions near Hama city in northwest Syria after Israeli airstrikes, June 24, 2020
Only five days after its most recent airstrikes, Israel has again carried out multiple attacks on Assad regime positions inside Syria.
The missile strikes at 1:30 a.m. on Wednesday were in the al-Zabadani area in western Syria, near the border with Lebanon. One of the targets was reportedly an arms depot, indicating a focus on the regime’s weapons shipments to the Lebanese organization Hezbollah.
Bombing of a Syrian military air defense battery near Damascus killed one soldier and injured three, according to regime media.
Despite the casualties and a fireball from the strikes on al-Zabadani, the regime’s military issued its standard declaration, “The Syrian air defenses intercepted a number of the enemy’s missiles.”
— ELINT News (@ELINTNews) December 30, 2020
On Christmas Day, Israeli warplanes struck the Assad regime’s main complex for conventional and chemical weapons. The attack on Masyaf in Hama Province levelled four production buildings “probably used for mixing and casting components of missile engines and warheads”, according to an Israeli intelligence firm.
Throughout Syria’s 114-month conflict, Israel has regularly struck regime and Iranian positions. It is seeking to prevent transfer of weapons and missiles to Hezbollah, another essential backer of the regime, and to pressure Iran to withdraw its forces and Iranian-led foreign militias.
Since April, the strikes have escalated. Targets across the country have included Damascus International Airport, the T4 base in central Syria, positions with Iranian personnel and Iranian-led militia near the Iraq border, and Assad regime posts in southwest Syria near the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights.