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IDF soldiers near Syrian border (archives) Photo: AFP
IDF soldiers near Syrian border (archives) Photo: AFP
 
 

IDF: Friday's explosion near Syrian border – intentional

Preliminary investigation carried out by IDF reveals explosion near force in Golan Heights was caused by planted explosives from Syria, marking severe escalation in tense Syrian-Israeli border

Yoav Zitun
Published: 12.07.13, 13:22 / Israel News

The explosion that occurred Friday near an IDF force on a routine patrol along the Syrian border fence was a result of explosive devices deliberately planted on the ground, an IDF examination into the event revealed Saturday. No injuries were reported in the event; however an IDF vehicle was damaged.

 

The incident is an escalation in terms of security dangers from the Syrian side – during the ongoing Syrian civil war, artillery, mortar shells and bullets were fired towards the Israeli side, yet this is the first indication of an intentional act against an IDF force.

 

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Friday's incident occurred between Majdal Shams and IDF Outpost 105, where the army operates a field hospital for wounded Syrians. In the area between the town and the hospital, the army has recently been conducting massive fortification work on a new, revamped border fence between Israel and war torn Syria. As a result of the conflict, the IDF has been conducting weekly mind sweeps with the help of massive D9 bulldozers.

 

Earlier this week – for the first time – an IDF paratrooper opened fire and hit a Syrian gunman who fired at an IDF force south of Quneitra. The attacked force included senior officers; no injuries or damage were reported in the event.

 

Israel and the West have been increasingly concerned over the possibility that President Bashar Assad's regime's loss of control may lead to the instability of the entire regional security.

 

In the past two and half years, global jihad organizations have settled in Syria with tens of thousands of warriors, most of whom arriving to Syria from other countries such as Iraq, while thousands of Hezbollah militants are also operating within Syrian borders. It is feared that these radical organizations, together with other rebel forces in the country, will aim their weapons at Israel.

 

Earlier this week, clashes between Assad's army and Syrian rebels intensified in the northern Syrian side of the Golan Heights. In the past year, the area has been characterized as a focal point between rebels, including army defectors, and Assad's forces. The area is considered particularly sensitive since many wounded Syrians are taken through the area to receive humanitarian aid by the IDF in Israel.

 

Meanwhile, the southern border too saw an unusual event Saturday morning that challenged the relative calm in the region. Palestinians in the Gaza Strip fired three rockets towards Israel. All rockets exploded in open areas near the border, on the Palestinian side.

 

 

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