Army: Syrian shells hit Israeli Golan

2013-03-02 18:11
Israeli soldiers (File, AP)

Israeli soldiers (File, AP)

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Jerusalem - Mortar rounds believed to be have been fired from Syria hit the southern Israeli-occupied Golan Heights on Saturday without causing damage or casualties, the army said.

"Several shells landed and were found in an open area in the southern Golan Heights, most likely due to the fighting in Syria," a spokesperson told AFP.

"No injuries or damages were caused. The incident was reported to the United Nations forces, and IDF (Israeli Defence Forces) soldiers continued searching the area," he said.

On Wednesday, a mortar shell struck the central Golan Heights, causing no injuries or damage, after nearly three months of no spillover from the fighting in Syria.

The same day, six Syrians were discharged from an Israeli hospital and returned to Syria, with a seventh staying behind for further treatment.

They were wounded in the fighting over the border and allowed on 16 February to cross into Israel, where they received treatment at Ziv hospital in the northern Galilee town of Safed.

Such incidents have been sporadic but have increased over the past six months as violence from the civil war in Syria seeped across the ceasefire line.

In recent months, there have been several instances of gunfire or mortar shells hitting the Israeli side of the plateau.

In November, troops responded with artillery in the first such instance of Israeli fire at the Syrian military since the 1973 war.

Israel seized the Golan from Syria in the 1967 Six-Day War and annexed it in 1981, in a move never recognised by the international community.

It is currently upgrading its security fence along its armistice line with the work expected to be finished by the end of the year.

Read more on:    syria  |  israel  |  middle east peace

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