Syria on Sunday accused Israel of targeting an airbase in Homs province, in the second such attack in 24 hours. “Our air defences thwarted an Israeli aggression and destroyed two of the rockets that targeted the T-4 airbase,” a military source told state news agency SANA.
The remaining rockets “killed one soldier, wounded two others, and damaged an arms warehouse,” the source added. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported five killed, including one Syrian soldier.
It said the attack also destroyed a rocket warehouse. In addition to the Syrian army, Iranian fighters and Hezbollah paramilitary forces are also stationed at the airbase, according to the monitor.
The attack comes hours after Israel announced that it had carried out strikes in Syria in response to rare rocket fire from the neighbouring country. The Observatory said 10 were killed, including Syrian soldiers and foreign fighters in the attack south of the capital.
Israel has carried out hundreds of air strikes in Syria, most of them against what it says are Iranian and Hezbollah targets. Israel says it is determined to prevent its arch foe Iran from entrenching itself militarily in Syria, where Tehran backs President Bashar al-Assad in the country’s eight-year war which has killed more than 370,000 people.
The Jewish state insists that it has the right to continue to target positions in Syria held by Iran and its Lebanese ally Hezbollah out of self-defence. The latest reported strike comes amid soaring tensions between Iran and the United States.
The stand-off had been simmering since the US last year withdrew from the 2015 nuclear treaty which Iran reached with major world powers. In recent weeks Washington has accused Iran of alleged threats and deployed an aircraft carrier group and B-52 bombers to the Gulf.