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Israeli airstrikes target Syria’s historic Palmyra

ISRAELI rockets pounded Syria’s Homs province today, killing one soldier and wounding three others as Tel Aviv continues to escalate hostilities in the region.

Missiles were said to have struck the historical city of Palmyra, which has been rebuilt since large parts of it were destroyed by Isis in what has ben described as an act of “cultural genocide.”

“A soldier of the Syrian Arab Army was martyred and three others were wounded as a result of an Israeli air raid on the Palmyra area in the eastern countryside of Homs,” a Syrian army statement said.

Military sources believe that the target of the attack was a communications tower and some of its surrounding areas.

The missile were said to have been launched from the direction of al-Tanf, a crossing in the Syrian desert which intersects the country’s borders with Jordan and Iraq.

It is the site of a US military base and has been used to train member of armed opposition gangs as part of Washington’s failed bid to oust the government of President Bashar al-Assad.

Washington stands accused of flooding Syria with jihadists under the covert CIA Timber Sycamore programme, which cost about $1 billion (£730.7 million) until then US president Donald Trump pulled the plug on it in 2017.

Another attack was reportedly launched from al-Tanf on Friday, with the Syrian air defences shooting down missiles aimed at a military base in Homs.

Israel neither confirms nor denies such attacks, but admits to have carried out hundreds of air strikes since the launch of a foreign-led war in 2011.

In January this year at least 57 people were killed in eastern Syria in what were the deadliest air strikes since the aggression began.

The latest air strikes come amid growing tensions in the occupied Golan Heights, Syrian territory seized by Israel in the 1967 six day war.

Israel mobilised tanks to the territory’s border earlier this week after Syria promised it would regain control of the land.

Air space over the Golan Heights was closed after the air strike for the first time since December last year.

Despite the increased aggression, Mr Assad has consolidated his position, winning re-election in May for another five-year term of office.

Arab nations are restoring diplomatic links with his administration while a number of countries are reopening embassies and consulates in Damascus.

Washington, however, refuses to accept defeat and continues to hold the country under coercive sanctions which Mr Assad says is a bid to starve the Syrian people into submission.

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