6 Iranians among 9 dead in Israeli strike on Syria, monitor says
Six Iranians fighting for the Syrian regime were among those killed in reported Israeli missile strikes in southern Syria this week, a war monitor said Thursday.
Israeli missiles targeted “military positions and intelligence facilities belonging to Iran and [pro-Iranian] militias” in the southern provinces of Daraa and Quneitra early on Wednesday, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.
Syrian state media had already reported on Wednesday that the “Israeli enemy launched an aggression” against military positions held by the government and its allies in Daraa province, but did not mention casualties.
The Observatory said Thursday the strikes had killed six Iranians and three pro-regime Syrian fighters.
The Britain-based monitor gathers its information from a vast network of contacts across Syria.
Israel has carried out hundreds of airstrikes in Syria since the beginning of the conflict in 2011, targeting Iranian and Hezbollah forces in the country, as well as those loyal to the Assad regime, as part of a stated policy to prevent arms transfers to Hezbollah in Lebanon and the entrenchment of Iranian military forces across from Israel’s northern border.
Israel does not usually comment on specific reports of strikes, but does insist it has the right to defend itself by targeting positions held by Iran and Hezbollah.
The area targeted on Wednesday lies close to the Israeli-annexed part of the Golan Heights.
On June 30, Israeli airstrikes killed six civilians, including three children, and nine mostly foreign pro-regime fighters, according to the Observatory.
Regional Cooperation Minister Tzachi Hanegbi boasted Sunday that Israel is the only country in the world that has been “killing Iranians.”
The Syrian conflict has killed at least 370,000 people and drawn in regional and world powers since it started with the brutal repression of anti-government protests.
Read more: The Times of Israel