By: Aryeh Savir
The Israeli Air Force (IAF) conducted a series of strikes against Iranian-linked targets in Syria on Monday night, the third such attack in a week and a half.
Syria’s official SANA news reported that the Syrian army’s air defenses “repelled an Israeli air aggression that targeted some posts in the central and coastal regions, downing most of the missiles.”
A military source told SANA that the IAF carried out the attack from the direction of northern Beirut, targeting a number of posts in the central and coastal areas.
The attack wounded two soldiers and caused some material damages, the report said.
The time of the strike was fairly early and unconventional, seven in the evening.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) reported that the attack hit areas in the south-eastern countryside of Homs hosting military barracks, the headquarters of a regime-backed military formation, and the al-Shayrat airbase where the Lebanese Hezbollah and Iranian-backed militias have been stationed.
Fires reportedly broke out as a result of the Syrian army air defense missiles falling on locations in the Homs and Tartus countryside. A woman was reportedly injured.
The Saudi Al-Hadath channel reported that in parallel with the Israeli attack today on Homs, Israeli aircraft also attacked an Iranian-made air defense system intended for Hezbollah that was on its way from Tartus.
Some reports from Syria pointed to a warehouse of a precision missile factory east of Tartus as one of the targets of the attack.
The IDF has remained silent on the reports, as it usually does in these cases.
Following the attack attributed to Israel in Syria, the airspace in the Golan Heights was closed to civilian flights.
Israel has carried out several strikes against Iranian and Hezbollah targets in Syria.
Last Wednesday, the IAF carried out an air attack against targets in the countryside of Damascus, causing material damage.
On the Saturday before that, in mid-day, the IAF hit a shipment of advanced weapons on its way from Syria to Lebanon, killing at least five terrorists.
In total, at least seven attacks in the area have been attributed to Israel in the past month.
Iran and Hezbollah have in recent years been working to build up a military presence in Syria, a threat that remains a red line for Israel.
Iran routinely attempts to arm the Lebanon-based Hezbollah with advanced weapons. Israel has exposed and thwarted multiple attempts by Iran to transfer game-changing weapons to Hezbollah, including by air shipments from Iran, through Damascus Airport.
The IAF has carried out thousands of attacks to thwart the Iranian entrenchment in the war-torn country and to prevent Hezbollah from accumulating advanced game-changing weapons.