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Syria: 40 dead in Israeli raids against military positions

Since the start of the war in Syria in 2011, the Jewish state has carried out hundreds of strikes against the manpower of its sworn enemies, targeting government troops, Iranian allied forces and Lebanese Hezbollah fighters.

In recent weeks, bombing blamed on Israel has intensified in eastern Syria, where Iranian-sponsored foreign fighters militias are deployed in Deir Ezzor province, which borders Iraq.

The night strikes killed at least nine Syrian army soldiers and 31 foreign fighters attached to pro-Iran militias, and left 37 wounded, according to a new report provided to . by the director of the Syrian Observatory for Rights de l’Homme (OSDH), which was unable to provide the nationalities of the latter.

The strikes targeted arms warehouses and military positions, particularly on the outskirts of the town of Deir Ezzor, and in the deserts of Boukamal and Mayadine, said OSDH director Rami Abdel Rahmane.

The area hosts fighters from Hezbollah and the Fatimid Brigade, bringing together pro-Iranian Afghan fighters, according to OSDH.

The Israeli army has still not reacted to this information.

Recurring strikes

The raids carried out on the night of Tuesday to Wednesday are “the deadliest” since strikes in June 2018 in the same province of Deir Ezzor, according to Mr. Abdel Rahmane. At the time 55 pro-regime fighters, Syrians and Iraqis, had been killed, he recalled.

The official Syrian agency Sana reported on nightly Israeli strikes without providing details.

“At 1:10 am (11:10 pm GMT), the Israeli enemy carried out an aerial assault on the town of Deir Ezzor and the region of Boukamal,” Sana said, citing a military source.

“The consequences of the assault are currently being verified,” the source added laconically.

Already throughout the day on Tuesday, unidentified planes carried out several rounds of raids in the Boukamal region, killing 12 fighters from pro-Iran militias, reported OSDH, which had not provided in the immediate results for these strikes.

The Hebrew state keeps insisting that it will not allow neighboring Syria to become the foothold of Iranian forces.

In 2020, Israel struck about 50 targets in Syria, according to an annual report published by the Israeli army.

These raids represent a “clear policy” of Israel, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said in November.

The previous deadly strikes took place less than a week ago, targeting positions in southern Syria and south of the capital Damascus on January 7. Three pro-Iran fighters had perished by then.

Observers have voiced fears that Donald Trump and Israel will increase pressure against Iran and its regional allies in the final days of the president’s tenure.

Triggered in 2011 by the brutal repression of pro-democracy protests, the war in Syria has grown in complexity over the years, involving several powers and foreign armed groups.

It has claimed more than 380,000 lives and displaced millions of people.

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