Israeli air strike on Deraa in Syria kills eight soldiers

Seven others were wounded in the attack

The district of Deraa Al Balad in Syria's southern city of Deraa. AFP
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Eight military personnel were killed in an Israeli air strike in Deraa, a Syrian news agency has reported.

“At approximately 1.45am today, the Israeli army carried out an air aggression from the direction of the occupied Syrian Golan, targeting a number of our military points in the countryside [of] Deraa,” Sana reported, quoting a military source.

Eight soldiers were killed and seven others were wounded in the attack, Sana added.

The Israeli military said in a post on X, formerly known as Twitter, that its fighter jets struck “military infrastructure and mortar launchers” of the Syrian army “in response to rocket launches from Syria toward Israel yesterday.”

The military did not provide further details. It did not accuse Syria's army of firing the two rockets, which set off air raid sirens in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said it had received confirmed reports that at least 11 Syrian soldiers, including four officers, were killed and at least 10 others were injured in the overnight Israeli strike. The group said the strike hit a Syrian military post in the vicinity of the town of Qarfa, and the 12th Brigade in the Izraa area in the northern countryside of Deraa.

Since the war between Israel and Hamas started on October 7, raising tensions in the region, Israel has carried out several reported strikes in Syria including two on the Damascus airport and three on Aleppo’s airport that put them out of service.

Several militant groups supported by Iran operate in Syria, having multiplied after the 2011 revolt against President Bashar Al Assad.

Areas under the control of Mr Al Assad are widely seen as a key part of a weapons supply route from Iran to its militia allies in Syria and Lebanon, who have been striking at Israeli targets.

- With inputs from agencies.

Updated: October 25, 2023, 10:30 AM