Suspected Israeli missiles hit Syria for second day in a row

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Syria reported increased suspicion of Israeli strikes early Friday morning. It was the second Israeli attack in 24 hours.

Missiles from “Israel’s enemies” hit unspecified targets in the Damascus countryside at 12:17 local time (5:17 p.m. ET Thursday), Syria’s official SANA news agency reported. Some of the missiles were intercepted by Syrian air defenses and the strike caused material damage. The attack came from the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, the agency reported.

The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported that the strikes targeted an arms and ammunition depot southwest of Damascus used by Syrian and Iranian military forces. The observatory claimed that the Syrian army shot down at least one of the missiles.

A video showing the incident has been shown on social media.

Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) later said one of its officers, Milad Heidari, was killed in an Israeli attack outside Damascus on Friday. Heidari was serving as a military adviser in Syria. The IRGC has vowed revenge for his death, according to the affiliated Tasnim News Agency.

“Undoubtedly the fake and criminal Zionist regime will find the answer for this crime,” the IRGC said, according to Tasnim.

Why it’s important: The suspected Israeli strike was the second in about 24 hours. Early Thursday morning, Syria said two of its soldiers were wounded in an Israeli missile strike near Damascus. It is suspected that Israel will carry out regular attacks on Syrian and Iranian military targets in the country, although Israel rarely confirms this.

The following is a list of suspected Israeli strikes on Syria in 2023:

  • January 2: The airport was closed and two soldiers killed as a result of a strike on Damascus airport.
  • February 18: 15 killed in a strike on a state security building in Damascus.
  • March 7: Aleppo airport was hit by airstrikes and temporarily put out of service.
  • March 12: A weapons depot in central Syria was hit, killing a Syrian officer and two pro-Iranian fighters.
  • March 22: The area near Aleppo airport was again hit by missiles, causing flights to be rerouted.
  • March 30: The two Syrian soldiers were injured outside Damascus.

More information: US military forces and Iranian forces clashed in northeastern Syria last week. On Thursday, the Pentagon said it had killed eight fighters affiliated with Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps during the fighting.

Editor’s note: this article has been updated to include information from the IRGC.

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