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Israeli attack on Syrian missile site confirmed by U.S.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)
November 1st, 2013
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

It's been officially confirmed: Israel attacked missiles and equipment intelligence felt might be transferred to Hezbollah. Air raids against a Syrian missile base near the port city of Latakia were carried out on Thursday, according to a U.S. administration official speaking on the condition of anonymity.

LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - It's not yet known why the U.S. would leak such information. The incident could possibly inflame Syria to retaliate militarily against Israel.

An explosion at a Syrian air defense base near Jableh, in the Mediterranean coastal province of Latakia, has been confirmed by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which collates reports from opposition activists. The Latakia area is an Alawite and regime stronghold.

"We're not commenting on these reports," a Defense Ministry spokesman said.

It was at least the third time this year that Israel attacked a shipment of missiles deep inside Syria's borders.

An Israeli airstrike destroyed a cache of advanced anti-aircraft missiles bound for Hezbollah in January. And in May, Israel took out a shipment of Iranian-made missiles at a Damascus airport.

Israel has long warned that it is prepared to use military force to prevent advanced weapons -- particularly from Iran, reaching Hezbollah through Syria. Israel has reportedly carried out several air strikes on Syria earlier this year.

The Lebanese National News Agency confirmed that Israeli fighter jets and reconnaissance planes entered Lebanese airspace on Thursday morning and circled over Lebanon before returning to Israel.

Pan-Arab news outlet Al-Arabiya quoted sources that the target of the alleged Israeli attacks were SA-8 surface-to-air missiles being delivered to Hezbollah.

In the meantime, Syria has taken a major step toward disarming itself of chemical weapons, as demanded by the Obama administration two months ago.

The Assad regime has met the November 1 deadline to destroy its facilities to produce chemical weapons, the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons said.

Syria now faces a Nov. 15 deadline to win approval for a plan to destroy more than 1,000 metric tons of toxic agents and munitions.

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