Gunfire from Syria hits occupied Golan Heights as fighting lingers

Gunfire from Syria hits occupied Golan Heights as fighting lingers

Gunfire from Syria hit the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights overnight close to an Israeli military vehicle monitoring the ceasefire line but causing no injuries, the military said on Monday.
 
“There was gunfire near an Israeli military vehicle which was driving along the security fence,” a military spokeswoman said, adding the incident had occurred late on Sunday.
 
But she said troops in the area had not returned fire as they have done on previous occasions.
 
Such incidents have occurred with increasing frequency in the past few weeks as violence from the civil war in Syria spills across the ceasefire line.
 
Earlier this month, Israeli troops fired warning shots and tank shells across the U.N.-monitored ceasefire line in response to Syrian fire, in the first instance of Israeli fire directed at the Syrian military in the Golan Heights since their 1973 war.
 
Fears of a spillover of the conflict which has ravaged Syria for the past 20 months and left more than 40,000 dead, have widened as violence has spread to Syria’s borders with Turkey, Lebanon, Jordan and Iraq.
 
Meanwhile on Monday, rebels seized control of a strategic dam on the Euphrates river in northern Syria after days of fierce fighting, activists and a watchdog said on Monday.
 
Videos posted on the Internet show about a dozen rebel fighters in military fatigues walking at night on a road crossing the Tishreen dam, which straddles Aleppo and Raqa provinces, with others inside a control room, as one man proclaims: “The Tishreen dam is under Free Syrian Army control.”
 
The authenticity of the videos could not be confirmed but the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which receives information from a network of activists and medics on the ground, confirmed the dam had fallen to the rebels.
 
The Observatory also reported that Syrian troops on Monday pressed an assault on rebel strongholds in the northeastern outskirts of Damascus, killing a boy and girl from the same family in shelling attacks on the town of Irbin.
 
Elsewhere, fighting erupted along the ceasefire line of the Golan Heights, with two rebels killed in the villages of Al-Buraykah and Bir Ajam, both of which lie within the Syrian section of the demilitarized zone, the watchdog said.
 
The Israeli military earlier reported that gunfire on Sunday night from Syria hit the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights close to an Israeli military vehicle monitoring the ceasefire line but causing no injuries.
 
A military spokeswoman said Israeli troops in the area had not returned fire as they have done on previous occasions.
 
Also early Monday, Al Arabiya TV reported a massacre is reported in the Syrian town of Sheikh Miskeen in Daraa, activists said.
 
On Sunday, Syrian rebels captured a helicopter base just outside Damascus in what an activist called a “blow to the morale of the regime” near President Bashar Assad’s seat of power, while the bombardment of a village near the capital killed at least eight children.
 
Activists said the children were killed when Syrian warplanes bombed the village of Deir al-Asafir just outside the Damascus. The village is close to suburbs of the capital that has been witnessing clashes, shelling and air raids between troops and rebels over the past months.

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