Report: Assad Regime Moves Tanks, Artillery to Buffer Zone with Israel

A picture taken from the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights shows armed men, reportedly rebel fighters, driving a motorcycle near an abandoned UN building in the Syrian side of the Golan Heights, at an abandoned UN base at the Quneitra border crossing, on November 28, 2016. Israel's air force targeted gunman linked …
JACK GUEZ/AFP/Getty

The Times of Israel reports: The Bashar Assad regime is preparing an offensive to retake southern Syria and the Syrian Golan Heights from rebel groups and has reportedly placed tanks and heavy artillery inside the demilitarized buffer zone on the country’s border with Israel.

The step violates the Agreement on Disengagement signed in 1974 between Israel and Syria, which concluded the Yom Kippur War. Israel is expected to complain to the United Nations peacemaking force known as UNDOF, the Haaretz daily reported Thursday.

The United Nations Disengagement Observer Force has patrolled the buffer zone between Syria and Israel since 1974, a year after the war ended. For nearly four decades, UNDOF helped enforce a stable truce between the two countries, but the Syrian civil war has now spilled into the area, according to the report.

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