The Syrian military has claimed that Israel has hit two military sites in Hama province early on Thursday morning. The air strikes targeted a reported chemical weapons production facility and also hit a military camp that was used to store ground-to-ground rockets and where personnel of Iran and its ally, the Lebanese Hezbollah group, had been seen.
The Syrian army statement said that the air strike killed two soldiers and caused damage near the town of Masyaf. The Syrians warned of the “dangerous repercussions of this aggressive action to the security and stability of the region”.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which monitors the war, said the strike hit a Scientific Studies and Research Centre facility, an agency which the United States describes as Syria’s chemical weapons manufacturer.
The Syrian army statement said the Israeli strike, which it said took place at 2.42am (23.42 GMT) from inside Lebanese airspace, had been made in support of Islamic State.
Jets flying over Lebanon overnight broke the sound barrier and Lebanese media reported that Israeli warplanes had breached Lebanese airspace
Amos Yadlin, a former head of Israeli military intelligence, said the reported attack was not routine and targeted a Syrian military scientific center.
“The factory that was targeted in Masyaf produces the chemical weapons and barrel bombs that have killed thousands of Syrian civilians,” Yadlin said in a tweet.
The Israelis have frequently said that they won’t wait for Hezbollah rockets to fall on them before responding. They claim that the Scientific Studies and Research Center has shipped rockets and chemical weapons to Hezbollah. Israel fought a short but bloody war against Hezbollah in 2006.
And the attacks on Thursday fell on the 10th anniversary of the Israelis bombing a Syrian nuclear reactor.
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