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Syria Retaliates Against Israeli Airstrikes as Tensions Escalate

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IAF Jets Evade Missiles While Conducting Airstrike in Syria

The IDF, in turn, said on Friday that it used the advanced Arrow missile defense system to shoot down a Syrian anti-aircraft missile that was sacked at an Israeli jet.

A rare clash between Israel and Syria occurred early Friday morning after Israeli warplanes struck several targets inside Syria, with Syria retaliating with a salvo of ground-to-air missiles.

A military spokesperson said in a statement that one anti-aircraft missile was intercepted by its Arrow anti-missile system.

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

Israeli fighter jets at dawn Friday struck a number of targets in next-door Syria, according to the Israeli military.

In December, Liberman told a delegation of European Union envoys that Israel will "prevent the smuggling of sophisticated weapons, military equipment and weapons of mass destruction from Syria to Hezbollah". Jordanian sources stated that this was the attack target that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke about.

Israel said it was "absolutely untrue" that Syria's missiles downed one jet.

As recently as late February, Syrian media reported that Israeli jets hit military positions and weapons convoys near Damascus. "At no point was the safety of Israeli civilians or the IAF aircraft compromised", the IDF spokesman wrote.

"Netanyahu crawled to Moscow to pleaded with Putin because he fears ISIS's defeat, which is a failure for him and a victory for the Axis of Resistance", Nasrallah said, in reference to a group of Shia/Shiite powers that includes Hezbollah, Hamas, Syria, Iran and Iraq.

In November 2012, Israel fired warning shots toward Syria after a mortar shell hit an Israeli military post, the first time Israel had fired on Syria across the Golan Heights since the 1973 Yom Kippur War. The Arrow is created to knock down incoming ballistic missiles and was developed with financial and technical assistance from the United States.

There have been several reports over the past five years that Israel has targeted weapons convoys in Syria headed for Hezbollah in Lebanon, but until now Israel has not officially addressed these claims.

Following the war, Israel began developing the Golan, freeing farmers in the Hula Valley from daily Syrian sniper fire.

The group said it was an Israeli drone that had carried out the strike.

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