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SYRIA At least three Syrian soldiers killed in Israeli air strikes on Damascus

AT least three Syrian soldiers were killed during Israeli air strikes that struck the southern parts of the capital Damascus in the latest attack on the Arab country. 

Missiles were reported to have been fired from the occupied Golan Heights, territory seized by Israel after the 1967 Six-Day War. 

“Three people were martyred and some material losses caused,” a Syrian military source said, adding that the country’s air defence intercepted the “hostile targets” and shot down most of them.

Two flights were reportedly grounded after a fire near to Damascus International Airport as a result of the attack. 

Israel has continued to escalate its attacks on Syria, emboldened by the global silence and refusal  of world bodies including the United Nations to bring Tel Aviv to heel. 

Last week five people were killed in air strikes on the town of Masyaf in the Hama countryside while 10 people died in a missile attack on April 27. 

Israel refuses to comment directly on the air strikes but said that the country would continue to defend itself against Iranian activities in Syria.  

At least 130 Syrians were believed to have been killed last year by Israeli missiles in 30 air strikes.

On Friday, Syria’s ambassador to the UN Bassam al-Sabbagh told a meeting of the UN security council that a partial US sanctions waiver for areas held by occupying forces was a violation of Syrian sovereignty. 

The exemptions announced by acting assistant secretary of state Victoria Nuland last week will apply to areas under the control of Turkish-backed jihadist groups along with those governed by the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).

She claims that the general licence, which excludes oil, will enable US companies to invest in agriculture, health, education and other areas to bring much-needed investment to help reconstruction.

But Mr Sabbagh said the policy discriminated against the Syrian people and sought to divide the Arab country. 

“The recent decision by the US administration to grant a licence for economic activities in specific areas in the north-eastern and north-western parts of Syria controlled by separatist militias and terrorist organisations represents direct support by the US administration to these entities and a flagrant violation of the sovereignty of the Syrian Arab Republic and its independence,” he said. 

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