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Syria intercepts Israeli strike: state media

Israeli warplanes were heard flying over neighbouring Lebanon shortly before the strikes [AFP]

Date of publication: 25 December, 2020

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A war monitor also reported strikes on Maysaf in rural Hama, targeting "positions of regime forces and Iran-backed militias".

Syrian air defences on Friday intercepted missiles fired by Israel on the western province of Hama, state news agency SANA said.

"Our air defences intercepted an Israeli attack on the Masyaf area" in rural Hama, SANA reported.

Syrian state TV aired footage purporting to show air defences responding to the Israeli attack.

Israeli warplanes were heard flying over neighbouring Lebanon shortly before the strikes, according to AFP correspondents.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights also reported strikes on Masyaf, saying Israel was "likely responsible".

The war monitor said the attack targeted "positions of regime forces and Iran-backed militias," without providing additional details.

Read also: Air strikes 'likely carried out by Israel' kill 19 Iran-backed fighters in Syria

Israel, which did not immediately comment on the reports, has launched hundreds of strikes in Syria since the start of the civil war in 2011.

It has targeted government troops, allied Iranian forces and fighters from the Lebanese Shiite militant group Hezbollah.

It rarely confirms details of its operations in Syria, but says Iran's presence in support of President Bashar al-Assad is a threat and that it will continue its strikes.

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