Israel strikes militants in Syrian Golan Heights after rocket attack

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Israel says a series of air strikes killed four Iran-backed Islamic Jihad terrorists in the Syrian Golan Heights on Aug. 21 after rockets were fired into Israel from Syria.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said 14 Syrian military posts in an area in the Golan Heights under Syrian control were targeted.

“Iran sponsored these attacks. These were clear and intentional acts of aggression, directly violating Israel’s sovereignty,” the IDF said. “The IDF holds the Syrian government responsible for all attacks emanating from Syrian territory.”

An Israeli soldier at the Golan Heights border with Syria.
An Israeli soldier at the Golan Heights border with Syria.

Israel launched heavy overnight strikes against Syrian army posts in the border area in retaliation for what Israel said were rockets fired from Syria into Israel by Islamic Jihad. Observers say it marks the heaviest Israeli bombardment since the start of Syria’s four-year-old civil war.

“Earlier this week, I said that whoever tries to fire at us, we will hit them back, and so we did,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said.

“The Israel Defense Forces targeted the cell that fired, and the Syrian forces that allowed it. We have no intention to escalate the situation, but our policy still stands.”

The rocket fire into Israel set off fires but caused no casualties, officials said. Islamic Jihad denied it was involved.

The overnight Israeli bombardment killed one Syrian soldier and wounded seven, a Syrian military source said.

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