The IDF reported on Friday morning that it had eliminated the Islamic Jihad terrorist cell that the day before launched four rockets from Syria into the Golan Heights and Upper Galilee - according to reports a senior Syrian colonel is among the dead.
A senior officer said, "this morning we struck a vehicle in Syria with four people on board. We tracked this cell and it was struck ten to 15 kilometers from the borders in territory under the complete control of the Syrian army."
"This is a cell of Islamic Jihad directed by Iran," he added, emphasizing, "we are not interested to continue and heat up this (northern) theater, just to defend the northern border."
According to Syrian media reports cited by Channel 2, one of the dead in the strike on the terror cell was a senior Syrian officer of a rank parallel to that of Colonel, who was named Mohsan Issa.
The reports indicate Issa's aides were killed in the strike as well - their names were not published.
Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon (Likud) commented on the elimination of the terror cell, calling it "additional proof that we won't allow any attempt to disrupt our lives and harm the security of citizens of Israel."
"Those seeking to do so will know that the IDF and the security system will pursue them until the end and will place their hands on them, at any time and place," he added. "We have no intentions to compromise on this, and no one should test our resolve."
Syrian state TV reported the airstrike as killing at least five "unarmed civilians" at a Syrian army position, while the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a British-based monitoring group, said the strike killed two pro-regime militiamen travelling in a car.
Earlier on Friday the Syrian army reported that one Syrian soldier was killed and seven others wounded in an IDF strike on an army post in Quneitra, which came as part of the retaliatory strikes to the rocket fire.
Overnight the IDF struck 14 targets in total in Syria, as a response to the rockets, two of which hit the Golan Heights and two which struck the Upper Galilee. The explosions in the Upper Galilee set off two brush fires, which firefighters fought to put out.
Ya’alon said Thursday night the rocket fire "was carried out by a terrorist cell of the Islamic Jihad, operated, funded and armed by Iran. The shooting took place from territory controlled by the [Bashar Al-]Assad regime, which allows terrorist activity against Israel, and we consider it responsible."