Israel attacks Damascus Airport, kills five soldiers

Israel attacks Damascus Airport, kills five soldiers
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Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the airstrikes targeted positions where Iran-backed militias were stationed

Israel hit Syria's Damascus International airport and other targets south of the capital with missiles, killing five soldiers and causing material damage, the Syrian defense ministry said on Saturday.

Air defense systems intercepted most of the missiles, a ministry statement said without any mention whether the airstrike had affected airport operations.

There was no immediate comment from Israel's military or government.

The war monitor Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) also confirmed the attack, saying the airstrikes targeted positions in Al-Ghasola farms near Damascus Airport, where Iran-backed militias are stationed.

SOHR said this was the 25th Israeli attack on Syrian territory since the beginning of the year. 

Israel has intensified strikes on Syrian airports to disrupt Iran's increasing use of aerial supply lines to deliver arms to allies in Syria and Lebanon including Hezbollah.

Tehran has adopted air transport as a more reliable means of ferrying military equipment to its forces and allied fighters in Syria, following disruptions to ground transfers.

Throughout 2022, Israel targeted 73 positions in Syria, including buildings, warehouses, headquarters, centers and vehicles, killing 56 military personnel and injring 68 others, SOHR said