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Israel Bombs Syrian Posts After Their Troops Attacked

/ Source: Reuters
An Israeli army officer comforts a wounded soldier after he was unloaded from an army helicopter at a landing base in Haifa on Tuesday. Four Israeli soldiers were wounded when an explosion detonated near their jeep as they were patrolling Israel's border with Syria near Majdal Shams in the Golan Heights.AVISHAG SHAR YASHUV / EPA

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Israel attacked several Syrian military sites on Wednesday in retaliation for a roadside bombing that wounded four of its troops on the occupied Golan Heights on Tuesday, the Israeli military said.

They included a Syrian military headquarters, a training facility and artillery batteries.

Aircraft carried out the overnight strike, said Lieutenant-Colonel Peter Lerner. He described the targets as military facilities on the Syrian-held side of the Golan.

Israel captured the Golan from Syria in the 1967 war and annexed it in a move not recognized abroad. Tuesday's wounding of the soldiers as they patrolled the separation line on the strategic plateau marked Israel's worst casualties there since an insurgency erupted in Syria more than three years ago.

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An Israeli army officer comforts a wounded soldier after he was unloaded from an army helicopter at a landing base in Haifa on Tuesday. Four Israeli soldiers were wounded when an explosion detonated near their jeep as they were patrolling Israel's border with Syria near Majdal Shams in the Golan Heights.AVISHAG SHAR YASHUV / EPA

Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon said in a statement that the Syrian army had aided and abetted Tuesday's attack.

Parts of the Syrian-held side of the Golan are controlled by rebels fighting to topple President Bashar Assad, including al Qaeda-inspired militants hostile to Israel.

Israel says Lebanese Hezbollah guerrillas helping Assad battle the insurgency also have a presence on the Golan. Israel is believed to have struck inside Syria several times since 2013, against advanced weapons it believed were intended for Hezbollah, attacks it has neither confirmed nor denied.

Hezbollah accused Israel of carrying out an airstrike on one of its bases on the Lebanon-Syria border last month and vowed to respond. Israel said it would hold the Beirut government responsible if Hezbollah attacked it from Lebanese territory.

- Reuters

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