News / Middle East

Israeli Warplanes Strike Inside Syria

Free Syrian Army fighter look back as they stand in front of a burning barricade during heavy fighting in the Ain Tarma neighborhood of Damascus January 30, 2013.Free Syrian Army fighter look back as they stand in front of a burning barricade during heavy fighting in the Ain Tarma neighborhood of Damascus January 30, 2013.
x
Free Syrian Army fighter look back as they stand in front of a burning barricade during heavy fighting in the Ain Tarma neighborhood of Damascus January 30, 2013.
Free Syrian Army fighter look back as they stand in front of a burning barricade during heavy fighting in the Ain Tarma neighborhood of Damascus January 30, 2013.
VOA News
Israeli warplanes struck inside Syria Wednesday for the first time in five years. Reports about the airstrike have differed in some details, and Israel has been silent about its action.

Syrian authorities say Israeli jets fired on a military research facility near Damascus, killing two people and wounding five others. That account set the location of the airstrike at a point about 15 kilometers northwest of the Syrian capital.

Israeli and Western news media carried reports of an Israeli airstrike at a different location - close to the Syrian-Lebanese border - and said the target was a convoy delivering missile parts to Hezbollah, the strongly anti-Israel Shi'ite militia based in Lebanon.

The conflicting reports could not be resolved or independently confirmed by early Thursday, and it remained unclear whether one or two separate strikes occurred.  Israel routinely declines to acknowledge pre-emptive military actions, and refused all comment Wednesday.

However, Israeli officials have warned in recent weeks that they will not tolerate any transfer of Syrian weapons to militants such as Hezbollah, if that should occur in the midst of Syria's raging civil war as the Assad government's control over the country weakens.

The former head of the Israeli intelligence agency Mossad, Amnon Sofin, says Israel's greatest concern is that Syrian chemical weapons could come under control of Hezbollah militants dug in along the Lebanese border.

Sofin told reporters Wednesday that Hezbollah already has missiles and launchers, and there are fears that such rockets could be fitted to carry chemical warheads.

A statement from Syria's military command described the early-morning Israeli attack as "a direct strike on a scientific research center." It said the strike followed months of "botched attempts" to seize control of the facility by "terrorist groups" - the regime's label for rebels trying to topple President Bashar al-Assad. The Israeli pilots are said to have flown into Syria at low altitude to evade detection.

You May Like

Video One Year After Thai Coup, No End in Sight for Military Rule

Since carrying out the May 22, 2014 coup, the general has retired from the military but is still firmly in charge More

Goodbye, New York

This is what the fastest-growing big cities in America have in common More

Job-Seeking Bangladeshis Risk Lives to Find Work

The number of Bangladeshi migrants on smugglers’ boats bound for Southeast Asian countries has soared in the past two years More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Seth_DeKooters from: Hartford, CT
February 03, 2013 5:00 PM
The Israeli attack was unprovoked and without the sanction of any international body. It constitutes an act of war under international law. The question for readers is why does the United States, which claims that international relations should adhere to the rule of law, continue to pay tribute to Israel.

by: Anonymous
January 31, 2013 11:24 AM
Because of the differences in religions, and their beliefs, I often wondered "What if" Israel of all places came to the rescue of these people. Everyone is a person regardless of their religion, every soul counts. Israel went through great hardship we all know through ww2 so they know what it is like to be under the same regime type in Syria. Israel would be a great candidate for helping the Syrian people. But the Syrian people would have to understand that it is not a war against the people of Syria, but rather the Government of Syria. There would be some innocent casualties I am sure but it would save many thousands of others. Someone is better than nobody helping the Syrian people win their Nation back. These people deserve their peaceful Nation back. Not only is it terrible for each and every Syrian, but it is also costing other countries millions. Most importantly the death toll on either side.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthroughi
X
May 22, 2015 10:23 AM
Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Turkey's Main Opposition Party Hopes for Election Breakthrough

Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party has sought an image change ahead of the June 7 general election. The move comes after suffering successive defeats at the hands of the Islamist-rooted AK Party, which has portrayed it as hostile to religion. Dorian Jones reports from the western city of Izmir.
Video

Video Europe Follows US Lead in Tackling ‘Conflict Minerals’

Metals mined from conflict zones in places like the Democratic Republic of Congo are often sold by warlords to buy weapons. This week European lawmakers voted to force manufacturers to prove that their supply chains are not inadvertently fueling conflicts and human rights abuses. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Class Tackles Questions of Race, Discrimination

Unrest in some U.S. cities is more than just a trending news item at Ladue Middle School in St. Louis, Missouri. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, it’s a focus of a multicultural studies class engaging students in wide-ranging discussions about racial tensions and police aggression.
Video

Video Mind-Controlled Prosthetics Are Getting Closer

Scientists and engineers are making substantial advances towards the ultimate goal in prosthetics – creation of limbs that can be controlled by the wearer’s mind. Thanks to sophisticated sensors capable of picking up the brain’s signals, an amputee in Iceland is literally bringing us one step closer to that goal. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Afghan Economy Sinks As Foreign Troops Depart

As international troops prepare to leave Afghanistan, and many foreign aid groups follow, Afghans are grappling with how the exodus will affect the country's fragile economy. Ayesha Tanzeem reports from the Afghan capital, Kabul.
Video

Video Poverty, Ignorance Force Underage Girls Into Marriage

The recent marriage of a 17-year old Chechen girl to a local police chief who was 30 years older and already had a wife caused an outcry in Russia and beyond. The bride was reportedly forced to marry and her parents were intimidated into giving their consent. The union spotlighted yet again the plight of many underage girls in developing countries. Zlatica Hoke reports poverty, ignorance and fear are behind the practice, especially in Asia and Africa.
Video

Video South Korea Marks Gwangju Uprising Anniversary

South Korea this week marked the 35th anniversary of a protest that turned deadly. The Gwangju Uprising is credited with starting the country’s democratic revolution after it was violently quelled by South Korea’s former military rulers. But as Jason Strother reports, some observers worry that democracy has recently been eroded.
Video

Video California’s Water System Not Created To Handle Current Drought

The drought in California is moving into its fourth year. While the state's governor is mandating a reduction in urban water use, most of the water used in California is for agriculture. But both city dwellers and farmers are feeling the impact of the drought. Some experts say the state’s water system was not created to handle long periods of drought. Elizabeth Lee reports from Ventura County, an agricultural region just northwest of Los Angeles.
Video

Video How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction

An international team of scientists has sequenced the complete genome of the woolly mammoth. Led by the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm, the work opens the door to recreate the huge herbivore, which last roamed the Earth 4,000 years ago. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble considers the science of de-extinction and its place on the planet
Video

Video Blind Boy Defines His Life with Music

Cole Moran was born blind. He also has cognitive delays and other birth defects. He has to learn everything by ear. Nevertheless, the 12-year-old has had an insatiable love for music since he was born. VOA’s June Soh introduces us to the young phenomenal harmonica player.

VOA Blogs