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Israel launches new airstrike near Damascus

Israeli air strikes hit positions held by the Syrian government and its pro-Iranian allies near Damascus overnight, a war monitor said on Wednesday.

It was the second Israeli attack to target areas near the capital in four days.

Syrian state news agency SANA confirmed the raids and said they caused only material damage.

“The Israeli enemy launched an aerial aggression with a number of missiles,” the news agency quoted a military source as saying, naming the targeted area as Zakia.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the targets were army positions and arms depots belonging to Iran-backed militias.

Israel carries out raids on Syria mostly during nighttime. Wednesday’s raid occurred shortly after midnight, Syria’s military said.

There has been an increase in reported Israel attacks in recent weeks.

Similar strikes last week killed at least five militiamen, the Observatory said.

Israel has staged hundreds of strikes on Iran-linked military targets in Syria over the years but rarely acknowledges or discusses such operations.

Israel has acknowledged, however, that it is targeting bases of Iran-allied groups, such as Hizbullah.

It is going after arms shipments believed to be bound for the group. Hizbullah is fighting on the side of Syrian President Bashar Assad’s forces in the civil war.

Israel says Iranian presence on its northern frontier is a red line, and it has repeatedly struck what it has described as Iran-linked facilities and weapons convoys destined for Hizbullah.

Source: Naharnet.com

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