Three Syrian soldiers killed in Israeli attack near Damascus, says state media

It follows strikes near the Golan Heights, on a military post and an assault against anti-aircraft batteries

Israeli soldiers walk near Moshav Sha'al in the Israeli-annexed Golan Heights on February 9. AFP
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Three Syrian soldiers have been killed in what the Syrian government has called an Israeli missile strike near the capital Damascus, a day after Syria said Israel fired missiles on the border city of Quneitra.

If confirmed, it would be the third attack by Israel on Syria in two weeks and the fourth in a month.

Syria's state news agency Sana said the attack occurred at 1.10am on Thursday, citing an unnamed source.

”Syrian air defences intercepted most of the enemy’s missiles,” Sana said. “The attack resulted in the death of three soldiers and some material losses.”

Israel’s military and Ministry of Defense did not immediately respond to requests for a comment from The National.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), reported that explosions were heard in Damascus and its suburbs "after the interception of Israeli missiles by the Syrian regime's anti-aircraft defence".

It follows strikes in recent days on a town near the Golan Heights, a Syrian military post on February 17, and an assault against anti-aircraft batteries at the start of the month.

Israel rarely comments on individual attacks but admitted earlier this month to a round of air strikes that hit anti-aircraft positions in Syria.

“In response to the anti-aircraft missile launched from Syria earlier tonight, we just struck surface-to-air missile targets in Syria, including radar and anti-aircraft batteries,” the Israeli military said.

In the past, Israel said it conducted hundreds of strikes in Syria, focusing mainly on Iran-supplied missiles used by Hezbollah and other groups that might attack it.

In 2019, former Israeli chief of staff Gadi Eisenkot said: “We struck thousands of targets without claiming responsibility or asking for credit."

Updated: February 24, 2022, 6:29 AM