IDF beefs up troops in north as Syrian offensive escalates

The IDF is stepping up its presence on the border with Syria ahead of Assad’s advance. 

By: World Israel News Staff

The IDF augmented its forces on Israel’s northern border with Syria Sunday following the southward advance of President Bashar al-Assad’s army and the heavy fighting adjacent to Israel’s Golan Heights.

Following a situation assessment Sunday, the IDF’s Northern Command decided to boost the IDF presence on the border with tanks and artillery.

“The IDF sees it as highly important to maintain the 1974 Agreement on Disengagement between Israel and Syria. The IDF will also insist on the principle of non-involvement in the situation in Syria, alongside a policy of a firm response to any violation of the State of Israel’s sovereignty and creating a risk to its residents,” the IDF stated.

“Israel has been providing humanitarian aid for years and keeps providing it these days, in light of the necessity,” the IDF added.

Read  Watch: Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh urges Palestinians across the Middle East to battle Israel

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu issued a similar message when he stated that Israel “will continue to defend our borders.”

Addressing the weekly Cabinet meeting on Sunday, he said that Israel “will extend humanitarian assistance to the extent of our abilities. We will not allow entry into our territory, and we will demand that the 1974 Separation of Forces Agreement with the Syrian army be strictly upheld.”

Israel in recent days has dispatched massive humanitarian aid to Syrian refugees fleeing Assad’s advancing army and has treated six wounded Syrians in Israeli hospitals.

“I am in continual contact with the White House and the Kremlin on this matter. The Defense Minister and the Chief-of-Staff are in similar contact with their counterparts in both the US and Russia,” Netanyahu added.

A string of Syrian rebel-held towns and villages in the Daraa area fell to Assad’s control on Saturday as insurgent lines collapsed under an intense bombardment that has forced tens of thousands of people to flee.