Sunday, January 18, 2015

Israel strike in Syria kills Mughniyeh's son, 9 others

BEIRUT: An Israeli helicopter strike on Syria's Golan Heights Sunday killed the son of slain Hezbollah top commander Imad Mughniyeh and 9 other fighters, a Lebanese security source told The Daily Star.
Jihad Mughniyeh, field commander Mohammad Issa who goes by the nom de guerre "Abu Issa" and 7 other Hezbollah fighters were killed in the attack, the source said.
An Iranian field commander Abu Ali Tabtabai was also killed in the strike. The strike entirely destroyed one Hezbollah vehicle and damaged another, the source said.
Hezbollah issued a statement confirming the strike saying "a number of mujahedeens were martyred," during an inspection mission in the Syrian town of Quneitra. The Hezbollah statement added that the names of the fighters will be divulged later.
In addition to Mughniyeh and Issa, the source said some of the Hezbollah fighters who were killed in the strike include: Mahdi Nasser al-Moussawi, Ali Fouad Hasan, Ghazi Ali Dawi, Hussein Hasan Hasan and Hussein Ismail al-Ashhab.
Lebanon's state-run National News Agency reported that Israeli forces went on high alert in the Shebaa Farms area, southeast of Lebanon, after news emerged that Hezbollah fighters were the target of the strike.
An Israeli helicopter carried out a strike against "terrorists" in the Syrian sector of the Golan Heights who were allegedly preparing an attack on Israel, an Israeli security source had earlier said.
The source told AFP the strike took place near Quneitra, close to the cease-fire line separating the Syrian part of the Golan Heights from the Israeli-occupied sector, confirming a report by Hezbollah's Al-Manar television.
The report had said that an Israeli helicopter fired two missiles in the Syrian province of Quneitra near the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights.
It did not specify the target of the strike in the area, called Amal Farms. The Israeli military declined comment and Syrian state media did not mention the attack.
In the introduction to its evening news bulletin, Al-Manar described the Israeli strike "a foolish venture" that reflects Israel's "madness" in light of Hezbollah's growing military might and that could lead to a costly adventure that puts the entire Middle Eat region in jeopardy.
Quneitra has seen heavy fighting between forces loyal to President Bashar Assad and rebels including Al-Qaeda-linked fighters.
"An Israeli helicopter fired two missiles on Amal Farms in Quneitra," the Lebanese news channel said, adding that two reconnaissance planes were also flying over the area.
Israel has struck Syria several times since the start of the nearly four-year civil war, mostly destroying weaponry such as missiles that Israeli officials said were destined for Hezbollah in neighboring Lebanon.
Syria said last month that Israeli jets had bombed areas near Damascus international airport and in the town of Dimas, near the border with Lebanon.

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