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Israeli strikes on Syria kill three — war monitor

By AFP - Sep 14,2023 - Last updated at Sep 14,2023

BEIRUT — Israeli strikes Wednesday on Syria's west killed two soldiers, state media said, with a war monitor reporting a militant was also killed when the air raid hit a Hizbollah weapons depot.

"At exactly 17:22 (1422 GMT) this afternoon, the Israeli enemy carried out strikes... from the direction of the Mediterranean Sea targeting some of our air defence sites in Tartus," official news agency SANA quoted an unnamed military source as saying.

"The aggression led to the death of two soldiers, and wounded six others," the report said.

During more than a decade of war in Syria, neighbouring Israel has launched hundreds of air strikes on its territory, primarily targeting Iran-backed forces and fighters of allied Lebanese group Hizbollah as well as Syrian army positions.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights war monitor said the latest strikes hit in addition to army positions a weapons depot belonging to Iran-backed Hizbollah near Al-Jammasah in Tartus province.

Al Jammasah is located south of Tartus city, a bastion of the Syrian government and home to a naval port used by Russia.

The Britain-based monitor with a network of sources inside Syria confirmed the deaths of two soldiers, adding that a fighter whose nationality was unknown had also been killed.

The observatory said the strikes targeted a Syrian air defence base in the village of Karto, about 10 kilometres away.

Israel rarely comments on individual strikes it carries out on targets in Syria, but it has repeatedly said it would not allow its arch foe Iran, which supports Damascus, to expand its footprint there.

On August 28, Israeli air strikes on Aleppo airport in northern Syria caused the grounding of flights, SANA said at the time.

A week earlier two fighters backing the Syrian government were killed in Israeli airstrikes on sites near Damascus, the observatory had said.


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