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13 Feb 2020 | 06:15 PM UTC

Syria: Air defense systems activated near Damascus February 13 /update 2

Syrian air defense systems reportedly intercept missiles near Damascus on February 13; unconfirmed reports of damages in the area

security
SYR

Event

Syrian air defense systems reportedly activated on the night (local time) of Thursday, February 13, near Damascus. According to Syrian military officials, multiple missiles launched from the Golan Heights were intercepted at approximately 23:45. The Syrian military did not immediately confirm any damages from the strikes, however, international independent observers claimed that some missile did hit targets near the Sayeda Zeianb neighborhood. Israel is suspected of conducting the strikes but has not made any public statements as of early Friday, February 14.

Similar airstrikes are possible in and around Damascus over the near term.

Context

Military targets, including Iranian-backed militia positions, near Damascus were hit in a series of strikes on February 6. According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, 23 people were killed. Israel was also suspected of conducting those strikes.

The Israeli military has struck more than 200 targets in Syria over the past two years, many of which have been arms depots and military facilities allegedly receiving arms and fighters from Iran and the Lebanese Hezbollah group.

Advice

Individuals in Damascus are advised to monitor developments, seek shelter, avoid nonessential travel and affected areas, and adhere to all instructions issued by the local authorities and their home governments.

Due to extremely poor security conditions, Western governments generally advise against all travel to Syria, with some banning travel to the country. Professional security advice and support should be sought prior to any travel to Syria.