Syria reports Israeli missile attack near capital, Damascus
Syrian air defenses were activated in the capital Damascus and its southern suburbs Sunday night to repel an Israeli missile attack, state media reported. State TV quoted an unnamed military official as saying that most of the Israeli missiles, which originated from the Golan Heights, were shot down before reaching their targets near Damascus.
An Israeli military spokesman declined comment when asked about the report. There was no word on casualties.
In a briefing to supporters of his party on Friday, Defense Minister Benny Gantz said Israel was taking action "almost weekly" to prevent Iranian entrenchment in Syria.
Regional intelligence sources say Iran's Quds Force and militias it backs whose presence has spread in Syria in recent years have a strong presence in a string of underground bases in the southern outskirts of Damascus.
Israel has launched hundreds of strikes against Iran-linked military targets in Syria over the years, but rarely acknowledges or discusses such operations.
The attack comes after the United States launched airstrikes in Syria on Thursday, targeting facilities near the Iraqi border used by Iranian-backed militia groups.
The Pentagon said the strikes were retaliation for a rocket attack in Iraq earlier this month that killed one civilian contractor and wounded a U.S. service member and other coalition troops.