Israeli Rockets Hit Syrian Territories Near Golan Heights
Tuesday night, just after midnight, Syria was on the receiving end of Israeli-launched rockets.
Syria’s official news agency, SANA, and Syrian state television reported on Wednesday that Isreal launched a rocket attack on military targets in Tel Al-Hara in southern Syria. The strikes hit areas near the Israeli-occupied Syrian Golan Heights, as well as other targets in the district of Darra in the south of Syria.
SANA claimed property damage was reported, but no injuries or deaths. However, the London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said it had “confirmed information about human and material losses” resulting from the Israeli attacks.
Over the past three months, Israel is believed to have targeted Syria with rockets multiple times, the latest of which was in early July when 16 people, including women and children, were reportedly killed.
According to a graphic by English-language online newspaper Haaretz previous Israeli strikes came on the below days:
- May 17: Syria intercepts Israeli strike aimed at Iranian and Hezbollah targets
- June 2: Isreal strikes Iranian and Hezbollah facilities
- June 12: Syria intercepts alleged Israel strike
- July 1: Israel reportedly strikes Syrian, Iranian, Hezbollah targets, killing over a dozen
- July 22: Hezbollah operative who recruited members on Syrian Golan Heights said killed by Israel in airstrike
- July 24: Israel reportedly strikes Syrian army base in Tel Al-Hara, other targets in south, two said wounded.
Tel Al-Hara is considered a strategic area because of its proximity to the Golan Heights – an area Israel has sought to have internationally recognized as part of Israel.
After Isreal seized part of the Golan Heights from Syria in the 1967 Six-Day War, Syria attempted to regain control of the occupied area in the 1973 Middle East War, but Syria’s efforts were thwarted. In 1981, the Isreali parliament passed the Golan Heights Law which sought to annex the entire area and impose Israeli law. The move was rejected by the United Nations which still considers the Golan Heights as occupied territory.
In a highly controversial move, U.S. President Donald Trump declared in March of 2019 that the U.S. recognized Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights. In response, the European Union and the United Nations both renounced the proclamation by the U.S.
Israel Admits Syria Attacks
Israel does not usually comment on airstrikes on Syrian territories, but last January Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Israel’s former military chief of staff, Lieutenant-General Gadi Eisenkot, admitted that Israel had repeatedly struck several targets in Syria since the outbreak of the Syrian civil war in 2011.
Israel officials have repeatedly issued warnings about the presence of Iranian and Hezbollah members in Syria. The officials, including Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, have stated that Israel will not tolerate the Lebanese Hezbollah party developing fighting capabilities against Israel.