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Israel Accused of Staging Deadly Airstrike on Syria

Israel is being blamed for a missile strike against the Mezzeh airfield outside Damascus early on Monday, with at least seven deaths reported. According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, four members of a “pro-Iran militia” were killed. The airfield is known to be used by the Islamic Republic as part of its support for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, and also for resupplying its Lebanese proxy, the Shi’ite Hizbullah militia. Syrian state media said three of the dead were civilians residing in nearby neighborhoods. Israel has admitted to past airstrikes against Iranian and Hizbullah targets in Syria, but has remained mum on Monday’s attack, which is being attributed at least partly to Israeli warplanes that launched missiles from Lebanese airspace. The pre-dawn airstrike came a day after Israeli Defense Minister Naftali Bennett told a radio interviewer: “Keep your ears open. We’ve gone from a policy of blocking [Iran] to pushing it out [of Syria].” One of the Syrian state media reports claimed that several incoming missiles had been intercepted.