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Israel threatens to launch incursion into Syria

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Israeli forces maneuver a Namer armored personnel carrier during the last day of a military exercise in the northern part of the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, September 13, 2017. (Photo by AFP)

The Israeli military has threatened to launch an incursion into Syria “to protect” the people of a village populated by the Arab country’s Druze minority, who are themselves supportive of the Syrian government.

“In recent hours, we witness the intensifying of the fighting at the area of the Druze village of Hader in the Syrian part of the Golan Heights,” Ronen Manelis, an Israeli military spokesperson, said in a statement on Friday, which was carried by The Jerusalem Post.

The military “is prepared and ready to assist the residents of the village and prevent damage to or the capture of the village Hader out of commitment to the Druze population,” he further claimed.

Since a war in 1967, Israel has occupied two-thirds of Syria’s Golan Heights.

The Hader Village, however, is situated in the part of the territory that is under Damascus’ control, and its population is aligned with the Syrian government, casting doubts about Israel’s real motives in possibly launching an incursion into Syrian territory.

The official Syrian Arab News Agency earlier reported that at least six people had been killed and 21 others wounded in a car bomb attack targeting the village by the Jabhat Fateh al-Sham Takfiri terrorist group, which was formerly known as al-Nusra Front.

Israel has been widely reported to be providing medical treatment to al-Nusra in Golan.

Tel Aviv has also several times targeted territory inside Syria, often claiming that it strikes convoys heading for the fighters of the Lebanese resistance movement of Hezbollah.

The Hezbollah fighters have been helping the Syrian military fight Fateh al-Sham and Daesh.

Takfiri groups such as Daesh and al-Nusra have never attacked Israel despite operating close to Syria’s borders with the occupied Palestinian territories over the past three years.

In April, Israel’s former minister of military affairs, Moshe Ya’alon, admitted to a tacit alliance with Daesh, saying the Takfiri group had “immediately apologized” to Tel Aviv after firing “once” into Israel. 

In September 2016, Israeli lawmaker Akram Hasson criticized Israel for supporting Takfiri terrorists in Syria, saying that the Fateh al-Sham terrorist group was operating in Syria with “unprecedented logistical and medical” support from Tel Aviv.

He said Israel’s escalation of attacks on the Syrian army positions in the Golan Heights had been aimed at paving the way for the terrorist group to gain more ground.

He said that Fateh al-Sham was bombing the Syrian Druze village of Khadr, with the support of the Israeli minister of military affairs, Avigdor Lieberman. Citing eyewitnesses, Hasson said the Takfiris were using advanced technological equipment, adding that Israel’s strategic support had been broadened over the past few months.

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