Israel says hit 'nearly all Iran infrastructure in Syria'

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The Israeli army claimed Iranian forces in Syria had fired 20 rockets into the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, but that all had been intercepted by Israel's Iron Dome air-defense system during clashes overnight Wednesday. There were no Israeli casualties.

Lieberman called the rocket fire "a new phase". "We will not let them use Syria as a base to attack us from".

Tehran is wary of a wider military conflagration with Israel that could jeopardize its military achievements in Syria at a time when it is trying to salvage the worldwide nuclear deal and may be limited in its ability to strike back.

Israel "views this Iranian attack very severely", Conricus told reporters.

Speaking at the Herzliya Conference, an annual security gathering north of Tel Aviv, Lieberman said Israel would respond fiercely to any further Iranian actions.

"This event is not over", he said. In an hour after opting-out of the agreement, Israel launched an air attack on Syrian military outpost near the capital of Damascus.

Syrian air defences, which fired dozens of times on Israeli jets, were also targeted, he said. Residents reported loud sounds that rocked their buildings.

The extent of the damage inflicted by the Israeli airstrikes was not immediately clear.

"We are in the midst of a protracted battle and our policy is clear: We will not allow Iran to entrench itself militarily in Syria", he said in a brief video address. Israel says its occasional strikes in Syria aim to prevent such an outcome. The state TV station said the attacks were foiled. The Quds Force, an external arm of Iran's Revolutionary Guards, carried out the rocket salvo, Israel said.

The Syrian foreign ministry said the Israeli attack indicated "the start of a new phase of aggression" against Syria.

Syrian media earlier said the hostilities began with Israeli fire at Syrian positions in southern Syria from across the border. Indeed, by Thursday morning, Israeli life returned to routine in the Golan Heights, with children going to school. Al-Ikhbariya TV said missiles targeted 10 Israeli positions.

It said the rockets followed a "first Israeli bombardment on the town of Baath" in Quneitra province.

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The White House has condemned Iran's "provocative rocket attacks from Syria against Israeli citizens" and expressed strong support for "Israel's right to act in self-defense".

Explaining the perplexing result, Rubin, the founder and original director of the Arrow defense program, a decades-long veteran of Israeli missile defense in the Defense Ministry and the National Security Council and now a fellow at the Jerusalem Institute for Strategic Studies, said that Iran had more advanced missiles which it had not used.

Reports have also indicated that Israel has hit a range of Iranian weaponry in recent weeks. Israel, as it has typically done in similar incidents, neither confirmed nor denied a role. But for months, it has repeatedly said it will not accept a permanent Iranian military presence in Syria.

If so, the likelihood that the Iranian-Israeli confrontation will escalate increases. Syria and Israel have never made peace.

Iran is a Syrian ally, and its military has been supporting President Bashar al-Assad. Iran has vowed to retaliate.

And it comes just days after US President Donald Trump's decision to walk away from the landmark nuclear deal agreed with Iran in 2015 - pouring fuel onto a raging fire.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Iran had "crossed a red line" and that the resulting bombardment "was a consequence". But Israel and Russian Federation have maintained close communications to prevent their air forces from coming into conflict.

Netanyahu then turned his attention to stating his case to the world.

The bombardment led to immediate calls for restraint from Russia, France, Germany and Britain, while the United States put the blame squarely on Iran and stressed Israel's right to "self-defense". Israel fired back on Thursday, hitting dozens of Iranian targets in Syria.

"We hit nearly all of the Iranian infrastructure in Syria", Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman said Thursday at the Herzliya Conference, a security and defense convention.

"We condemn Iran's attack on Israel. We have seen a demonstration of the IDF's intelligence and airpower capabilities", he added about the retaliatory strikes, according to the Post.