IDF Thwarts Attack by Syrian Cell that Entered Israeli Territory to Plant Bomb

JACK GUEZ/AFP/Getty Images

A Syrian terror cell that infiltrated Israeli territory Monday to carry out an attack against a military post has been thwarted, the IDF said.

The four-member cell planted improvised explosive devices inside an unmanned Israel Defense Forces (IDF) outpost along the border with Syria.

“A short time ago, an IDF force foiled an attempt to place explosive devices along the border with Syria,” the army said in a statement.

“Special forces that were carrying out an ambush near an IDF post in the southern Golan Heights spotted a cell with a number of terrorists planting explosive devices along the border.”

Soldiers from the Maglan special forces unit and aircraft opened synchronized fire on the four armed terrorists, killing them all, the army said.

No Israeli soldiers were injured.

The army is investigating the origin of the terror cell, IDF Spokesperson Hidai Zilberman said. He added it is still unclear whether the incident was connected to a recent infiltration by the Hezbollah terror group.

“We don’t know who sent them, there are a lot of players in Syria, some acting for Iran and some not,” he said. “We cannot say right now that this is a Hezbollah attack, but we can’t rule it out either.”

“I believe in the coming days we’ll know better about what organization they were a part of,” he said.

He added Syria would still be held responsible for any aggressive acts from its territory, including violations of Israeli sovereignty.

He also said the Northern Command is on high alert over concerns of a retaliatory attack by Hezbollah following the death of an operative in an alleged Israeli airstrike in Syria.

“We will continue to be on alert for many more days. We have a lot of patience,” he said.

According to Zilberman, the military identified several men in the guise of shepherds lurking in the area in recent days. The IDF then deployed reconnaissance troops from the Maglan unit.

The cell crossed the Alpha Line between Syria and Israel, Zilberman said.

Last week, the military opened fire at a number of terrorists from the Iran-backed group that had infiltrated Israeli territory.

Hezbollah’s attack was in retaliation for the death of one a Hezbollah fighters in an alleged Israeli airstrike in Syria last week, the Reuters news agency reported.

The cell, which numbered three or four, was driven back into Lebanese territory with Israeli machine guns and heavy artillery fire, Zilberman said.

He added that while he wasn’t sure the exact nature of their infiltration, it was clear they were planning an assault.


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