Its is widely believed that Israel has targeted the positions and weapons shipments of Lebanon’s Hezbollah group in its Friday attack against Syria.
Syria accused Israel of firing missiles early on Friday that struck near a major military airport west of Damascus, sparking a fire, and warned Israel of repercussions without specifying whether it would retaliate for the attack.
Several missiles were reportedly fired shortly after midnight from an area in the vicinity of Israel’s Lake Tiberias, according to Syrian military statement. The rockets fell near the Mezzeh military airport, which has been used to launch attacks on rebel-held areas near Damascus and has been attacked by rebels in the past, according to the military. The incident marked the third such recent Israeli strike in Syria, the statement said. The Syrian military warned of repercussions.
Israel’s main concern in Syria has been to target the supply lines of Hezbollah
The Iran-backed group, which fought a war with Israel in 2006, has sent thousands of fighter to Syria in support of President Assad’s forces.
Last November, the Syrian army said Israeli jets fired two missiles on an area west of the capital, close to the Damascus Beirut-highway, in an attack mounted from Lebanese air space.
Diplomatic sources say Israel has in the past few years targeted advanced weapons systems, including Russian made anti-aircraft and Iranian made missiles and bombed the elite Fourth Armoured Division base on Qasioun mountain in the capital.
An air strike in Syria in December 2015 killed a prominent Hezbollah leader, Samir Qantar.
Israel welcomed Qantar’s death, saying he was preparing attacks from Syrian soil, but stopped short of confirming responsibility for eliminating him.
Earlier that year, an Israeli air strike in Syria killed six members of Hezbollah, including a commander and the son of the its late military chief Imad Moughniyah near the Golan Heights.
Flare-up’s between Israel and Syria are frequent in the disputed Golan Heights region, which spans the border between the countries.
Israel captured the Golan Heights from Syria in the Six Day War of 1967, before Syrian forces led an unsuccessful counter-offensive in 1973, and Israel effectively annexed the vast majority of the occupied territory in 1981.