Syrian Air Defenses Counter Fresh Israeli Attack on Damascus

The Cradle

Israel has bombed Syria four times since the country was hit by a devastating earthquake in February

In the early hours of 30 March, Syrian air defense systems were activated to counter fresh missile attacks by the Israeli army targeting the city of Damascus from the occupied Golan Heights.

According to local reports, loud explosions were heard over the Syrian capital as several Israeli missiles were shot down. Military sources that spoke with SANA say the attack inflicted material losses and injured two soldiers.

Syria’s Defense Ministry later confirmed the attacks without providing any details on the targets.

Thursday’s attack is the fourth time Israel has bombed Syria since the country has hit by a devastating earthquake in early February, which left at least 6,000 dead and displaced hundreds of thousands more.

Eight days ago, Israeli jets pounded Aleppo International Airport in northeast Syria, putting it out of commission for several days and hindering the delivery of life-saving aid for the second time in a month.

“The impact of this closure impedes humanitarian access and could have drastic humanitarian consequences for millions of people who have been affected by the earthquake,” a UN statement issued on 8 March reads, highlighting that Aleppo is “one of the worst earthquake-impacted governorates in Syria.”

In the days following the earthquake, Israeli officials warned that Tel Aviv would “not hesitate” to bomb Iranian aid deliveries for disaster-struck Syria under claims that Tehran seeks to “take advantage of the tragic situation … to send weapons and equipment to Hezbollah.”

Israel has been launching hundreds of attacks inside Syria for nearly a decade, allegedly targeting suspected Iranian and Hezbollah positions. Israeli warplanes at times bombed Syrian army positions to assist offensives of the Al-Qaeda-affiliated Nusra Front during the western, Turkish, and Gulf-backed Salafist insurgency that began in 2011.

On 18 February, at least five people died, and 15 were critically injured in Damascus after Israel dropped bombs on a residential neighborhood.