Israel attacks Syrian launcher that fired rockets thought to have landed in Sea of Galilee

By Ori Lewis JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israeli jets and artillery on Wednesday attacked a site in Syria from where two rockets were launched which were thought to have landed in the Sea of Galilee, close to beachgoers, the military said. After air raid sirens sounded in the south of the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, the army said rockets had been fired from Syria towards Israel.

Reuters July 26, 2018 03:05:53 IST
Israel attacks Syrian launcher that fired rockets thought to have landed in Sea of Galilee

Israel attacks Syrian launcher that fired rockets thought to have landed in Sea of Galilee

By Ori Lewis

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israeli jets and artillery on Wednesday attacked a site in Syria from where two rockets were launched which were thought to have landed in the Sea of Galilee, close to beachgoers, the military said.

After air raid sirens sounded in the south of the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, the army said rockets had been fired from Syria towards Israel. They appeared to be stray fire from the fighting inside Syria.

"In response to the two rockets launched at Israeli territory from Syria, (Israeli) aircraft targeted the rocket launcher. The area surrounding it was targeted by artillery," an Israeli army statement said.

Israeli police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said police units were searching in the waters of the Sea of Galilee for remnants of the rockets, although nothing had been found initially.

"As I was watching the water, I saw something fall in. I didn't see what it was but I saw the spray from the impact," Hasdia Rada, a life guard at one of the lake's beaches, told Israeli commercial TV news. Another man said he heard a whistling sound before an impact.

There have been many instances of stray fire landing on the Israeli side of the rocky Golan plateau during years of fighting between Syrian rebels and forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad, but a rocket flying between 7-10 kilometres (4-6 miles) and landing in the lake would be the farthest yet.

Tensions had risen a day earlier after Israel shot down a Syrian warplane that it said had crossed into airspace above the Israeli-occupied Golan. However, Syrian state media said the plane was targeted by Israel while it was conducting raids in Syrian-controlled air space.

There have been days of bombing as Russian-backed Syrian government forces advance on rebel-held positions near the 1974 ceasefire line with Israel. The holdouts include one pocket near the frontier held by a group affiliated to the Islamic State.

Israel worries that Assad may defy a U.N. armistice that demilitarized much of the Golan, or allow Iranian and Lebanese Hezbollah forces to deploy there once he and his allies retake the Syrian side.

(Additional reporting by Eli Berlzon and Ilan Rosenberg, Writing by Ori Lewis; Editing by Andrew Bolton)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

also read

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources
| Reuters
World

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources | Reuters

By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States

China's Xi says navy should become world class
| Reuters
World

China's Xi says navy should become world class | Reuters

BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.