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IAF Strikes Twice in Syria, 'Base Destroyed'

Al Arabiya says trucks carrying SAM-8 missiles were attacked. No response from Jerusalem but US confirms attack on base.
By Gil Ronen
First Publish: 10/31/2013, 8:30 PM

Israeli warplane
Israeli warplane
Flash90

Israeli warplanes struck a military base near the northern Syrian city of Latakia on Thursday, an Obama administration official confirmed to CNN.

The target, according to the Obama administration official, was missiles and related equipment the Israelis felt might be transferred to Hezbollah.

The Al Arabiya network reported Thursday that Israel has carried out two strikes in Syria, in order to prevent trucks from carrying weapons to Hizbullah in Lebanon. The attacks reportedly took place near Damascus and in the Latakiya region. At least one of the attacks took place on the night between Wednesday and Thursday.

The report said that the trucks were carrying SAM-8 missiles. Jerusalem refused to comment on the report.

Sources among Syria's rebel organizations said earlier that an explosion took place near a Syrian military base in the Latakiya province. Initial reports did not say who was behind the explosion.

The BBC also said that “a large explosion at a Syrian army base has been reported outside the coastal city of Latakia” and that Israel is believed to have targeted the same base in July.

Al Arabiya said that its report was based on a rebel source as well as a source that is considered close to the Syrian regime. The latter source said that a base near Sanubar, on the coast to the south of Latakiya, was hit by a missile fired from the sea. A Lebanese news agency reported that six Israeli warplanes had entered the country's northern airspace, along the border with Syria.

Australian media reported Thursday morning from sources connected to the Syrian rebels that the base was completely destroyed. Several sources said the attack had come from the direction of the Mediterranean Sea. The base is reportedly an aerial defense base.

Lebanese media reported earlier that IAF combat jets and helicopters were flying over Aita a-Shaab, Bint Jbeil and Marj Ayoun in southern Lebanon. The Lebanese military also said that IAF planes had entered Lebanon's airspace.