Israel strikes 'all Iranian targets in Syria': Lieberman
Israel's army said Thursday it had carried out widespread raids against Iranian targets in Syria overnight after rocket fire was exchanged between the border of Syria and Israel overnight.
Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman said "we hit nearly all the Iranian infrastructure in Syria", during a security conference on Thursday morning.
"They need to remember the saying that if it rains on us, it'll storm on them. I hope we've finished this episode and everyone understood."
In the early hours of the morning, explosions were heard in Damascus, while live images were broadcast on television showing projectiles above the Syrian capital and several missiles destroyed by Syrian anti-aircraft systems.
Syrian state media reported that Israeli missile strikes had hit military bases as well as an arms depot and a military radar installation, without specifying the locations.
The official SANA news agency added that "dozens of missiles were shot down by anti-aircraft systems in Syrian airspace", saying a number of missiles had reached their targets.
The bombardment began after Israel struck the "town of Baath" in Quneitra province, according to monitoring group The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
"The Syrian air defences are confronting a new wave of Israeli aggression rockets and downing them one after the other," Syrian state news agency SANA reported.
Around 20 rockets were then fired from Syria in response, targeting Israeli forces in the occupied Golan Heights at around midnight.
Israel blamed the rocket fire on Iran's al-Quds force, adding that Israel's anti-missile system intercepted four of the projectiles while the rest did not land in territory it controls.
"We know that comes from the al-Quds force," army spokesman lieutenant-colonel Jonathan Conricus claimed, referring to the special forces unit affiliated with Iran's Revolutionary Guard, without providing further information.
The raids were one of the largest Israeli military operations in recent years and the biggest such assault on Iranian targets, the military said.
The incident came after weeks of rising tensions and followed US President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw from a key 2015 Iran nuclear deal on Tuesday, a move Israel had long advocated.
Trump's withdrawal from the nuclear deal has added to tensions and led to a new level of uncertainty over how Iran will respond.
There had been no comment from Iranian officials on the overnight escalations.