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Syria air defenses shoot down Israeli missiles near Damascus

Syrian air defenses shot down Israeli missiles late Friday, the official SANA news agency reported, citing a military source.

Most of the missiles fired by “Israeli military planes” were intercepted around 11 p.m. (2100 GMT) on January 12, the source said.

“Only a ministry of transport warehouse at Damascus international airport was hit,” SANA cited the military source as saying.

The state news agency also quoted a transport ministry source as saying that the airport was running normally.

Israel has previously carried out several bombings in Syria against what it says are Iranian military targets and advanced arms deliveries to Hezbollah, the Iran-backed Lebanese group, both avowed enemies of the Jewish state.

Many of them have been in the area south of Damascus.

In an earlier report, SANA had spoken of Syrian air-defense batteries attacking “enemy targets.”

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has vowed not to let Iran, a supporter of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, entrench itself militarily in the war-torn country. Israel rarely comments on operations in Syria.

On December 25, Assad accused the Israeli air force of firing missiles near Damascus.

In September a Russian Il-20 electronic signals aircraft was accidentally shot down by Syrian anti-aircraft fire that was attempting to block Israeli missiles.

In response, Russia said it would deploy the S-300 missile defense system in Syria.


With reporting from AFP

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