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Israel carries out airstrike in Syria’s Quneitra province

Syria said Israel carried out a missile attack that caused casualties, in what Israel’s army said was a retaliatory strike.

“An Israeli missile targeted Tel al-Shaar in Quneitra,” the Syrian news agency said, adding a “military vehicle was targeted and there are wounded.”

The Israeli military confirmed it carried out an airstrike in Syria on Monday, May 27 in retaliation for what it said was anti-aircraft fire targeting one of its fighter jets.

The Syrian province of Quneitra includes the Golan Heights, most of which is occupied and annexed by Israel.

“Earlier today, Syrian anti-aircraft systems fired at an Israeli fighter jet during a routine flight in northern Israel,” the Israel Defense Forces said in a statement.

It said the projectile missed and the plane completed its journey before “the IDF targeted the launcher that had fired” at the jet.

The Israeli Air force said the shell fell in Syrian territory and “the mission was completed as planned.”

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 February 2018, an Israeli F-16 fighter jet crashed while attacking Iranian targets near Damascus.

Israel has carried out hundreds of air strikes in Syria, most of them against what it says are Iranian and Hezbollah targets.

Hezbollah is a Lebanese Shiite group that supports Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad, who is also backed by Tehran.

The Israeli strike comes amid soaring tensions in the region between Israel’s arch-foe Iran and the United States.

The stand-off has been simmering since the United States last year withdrew from the 2015 nuclear treaty which Iran reached with major world powers.

In recent days the U.S. accused Iran of threats to American military personnel and President Donald Trump said he had approved the deployment of 1,500 U.S. troops to the region.

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With reporting from AFP

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