Israel struck targets in Syria early Monday morning after mortar shells from the war-ravaged country hit Mt. Hermon in Israel’s north. IDF forces responded with artillery fire aimed at the source of the mortar fire.
“This attack is a blatant violation of the sovereignty of the State of Israel,” IDF spokesman Lt. Col. Peter Lerner said. “We regard this attack with utmost severity.”
Lerner noted that Israel and “the IDF reserves the right to act in any way and at any time it sees fit to protect the citizens of Israel.”
Monday’s incident is not the first time the Syrian civil war has spilled into Israel’s borders. In March, two Syrian rockets landed near an IDF outpost on Mt. Hermon. The incident occurred mere weeks after an alleged Israeli airstrike in Lebanon targeting a weapons transfer from Syria to Hezbollah, prompting Israel’s northern border to be on high alert.
On the Gaza border, the Israeli Air Force struck two terror targets late Sunday night. According to a statement by the IDF Spokesperson’s Unit, one airstrike targeted a known terror site in southern Gaza and the second in central Gaza.
The IAF confirmed direct hits and were a response to two rocket attacks against Israel over the last two day. Sunday evening, terrorists fired a rocket into Israel around 9 pm. The rocket exploded in an open area in the Eshkol Regional Council. No injuries or damages were reported.
“This morning’s IDF actions are a direct response to Gaza terrorist aggression against the citizens of southern Israel. The unlawful Gaza rocket attacks, meant to terrorize, maim and kill Israelis will not be allowed to become routine,” Lerner said.
“We will fulfill our obligation to protect Israel and seek out and destroy the capabilities of those who wish to attack us”.
An IDF statement noted that it holds Hamas, the ruling organization in Gaza, responsible for the attacks. “The IDF will not tolerate attempts to harm Israeli citizens and IDF soldiers, and will operate against anyone who uses terror against the State of Israel,” the statement read.
The last IAF airstrike in Gaza was in April in response to rocket attacks by terrorists.