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File photo of an Israeli military jet. Alamy

'More than 40 dead' after Israeli air strike in Syria

Israel has launched hundreds of air strikes on targets in Syria since the civil war began there in 2011, as it seeks to cut off Hezbollah supply routes to Lebanon.


A WAR MONITOR has said Israeli air strikes on Syria’s north killed 36 soldiers and six Hezbollah fighters, the latest deadly raid on Iran-backed forces in the country since the Israel-Hamas conflict began.

Israel has launched hundreds of air strikes in Syria since civil war there broke out in 2011, targeting army positions as well as Iran-backed fighters including Hezbollah, an ally of Damascus and Palestinian militant group Hamas.

The strikes have increased since Israel’s war with Hamas began on October 7, and today’s was the second such attack in 24 hours.

“Israeli strikes” targeted “a rockets depot belonging to Lebanon’s Hezbollah” close to Aleppo airport, said the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which has a network of sources inside Syria.

It reported “42 killed, including six from Lebanon’s Hezbollah group” and “36 soldiers”, the highest Syrian army toll in Israeli strikes since the Israel-Hamas war began.

State news agency SANA, quoting a military source, reported that “at approximately 1:45 am, the Israeli enemy launched an air attack from the direction of Athriya, southeast of Aleppo”, adding that “civilians and military personnel” were killed and wounded.

Contacted by AFP from Jerusalem, the Israeli military said it would “not comment on reports in the foreign media”.

The Observatory also reported strikes targeting “defence factories” controlled by pro-Iran groups elsewhere in Aleppo province.

Iranian foreign ministry spokesman Nasser Kanani said the strikes were a “violation of Syria’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, and are a serious threat to regional and international peace and security”.

He called the attacks “a blatant and desperate attempt to continue and expand the crisis in the region”.

The attack came just hours after a reported Israeli strike in the Damascus countryside.

Syrian state media said “two civilians” were killed in an “Israeli air attack that targeted a residential building” on Thursday, also reporting material damage.

The Observatory said the Sayyida Zeinab area, a stronghold of pro-Iran armed groups including Hezbollah south of the capital, was targeted.

Israeli raids in Syria also seek to cut off Hezbollah supply routes to neighbouring Lebanon.