Israel bombed Syrian targets in retaliation to Syrian mortar fire, acting on its long-standing promise to respond to every incident – intentional or not.
Israel’s Air Force (IAF) carried out an airstrike against a Syrian military position in the Golan Heights on Saturday in response to 10 mortar rounds fired from Syria into Israel earlier in the day.
The mortar rounds exploded in an open space, causing no casualties nor damage.
In response, Israel Air Force (IAF) aircraft targeted the source of the fire, as well as two tanks belonging to President Basher- al-Assad’s army. The Syrians reported that two soldiers were killed and several were wounded in the incident.
Syria’s SANA news reported that “as part of the Israeli enemy’s continuing support for terrorist organizations,” Israeli warplanes attacked “service facilities and residential buildings” at the same time Jabhat al-Nsura terrorists were attacking the area.
The report said that the IAF launched the attack from within Israeli territory, “claiming a number of lives and causing material damage.”
An IDF spokesman tweeted that due to “the unacceptable breach of Israeli sovereignty,” an official protest has been filed with United Nations Disengagement Observer Force (UNDOF), the UN force situated on the Israel-Syria border, which is tasked with maintaining the ceasefire between the Israeli and Syrian forces.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the strike was in accordance with Israel’s policy. “We are not prepared to accept any spillover or trickle of fire from any front whatsoever. We will respond strongly to any firing at our territory,” he stated.
“We have no intention of allowing the breach of our sovereignty and harming of our security to go without response,” said Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman. “As far as we are concerned, the Assad regime is responsible for what is happening in its territory and it will continue to bear the consequences if such events repeat themselves.”
Opposing factions in Syria’s civil war have been battling heavily in the Kuneitra area adjacent to Israel’s northern border, and the fire that hit Israel is estimated to be stray. However, the heavy scope of the spillover was rare, eliciting Israel’s forceful retaliatory strike.
While Israel has refrained from intervening in the Syrian conflict, the IDF has responded to stray fire from Syria with artillery shelling or an air strike against Syrian army or rebel positions, in most cases targeting the source of fire.
By: Aryeh Savir, World Israel News