Israel Attacks Quake-ravaged Syria

February 20th, 2023 - by Jason Ditz / & Palestinian Chronicle

Israeli Missile Strike Hits Damascus Housing Complex, Killing 15

Jason Ditz /

(February 19, 2023) — Israel hadn’t launched significant attacks on Syria in several weeks, but did so early on Sunday with a missile salvo against the capital city of Damascus. The missiles hit a residential complex, badly damaging it and the surrounding area.

At least fifteen civilians were confirmed killed, including two women. A large number of injuries are reported, but no specific number. Israel has yet to comment directly, which is not uncommon when they attack Syria.

Prime Minister Netanyahu accused Iran of recently attacking a Liberian-flagged, but Israeli-linked, oil tanker, and Israeli media are trying to tie the two issues together, saying the damaged complex is located near Iranian sites.

Critics say Syria needs more aid, especially in cities where earthquake damage has overwhelmed already strained infrastructure. Though Damascus wasn’t directly impacted by the earthquakes, it’s a regular target for Israeli strikes.

Details are still scant on the incident, though Syrian media reported that air defenses activated and intercepted several missiles. Casualties are mostly from a single direct missile hit on the residential building.

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Syria Update: Israeli Attack on Central Damascus Kills, Wounds Many

Palestinian Chronicle

UPDATE: The Syrian Human Rights Observatory has updated the number of Syrian victims as a result of the Israel attack tonight, putting it at 15 dead, including two women, in addition to many other injuries. Other sources, however continue to report on the number of dead as 5 and wounded 15, 

At least one missile hit the Kafar Souseh neighborhood of Damascus overnight, severely damaging a residential building and causing multiple deaths and injuries, state news agency SANA reported early Sunday, blaming the Israeli military.

A volley of missiles fired from the occupied Golan Heights targeted Damascus and its surroundings around midnight, and even though Syrian air defenses were activated, at least one of the “hostile” projectiles directly hit a multi-story residential building, the agency said.

At least five people, including one soldier, were killed and another 15 civilians injured in the attack, a Syrian military source told SANA, adding that the “Israeli aggression” led to the “destruction of a number of civilian homes” and other “material damage.”

The Israel Defense Forces have not acknowledged the strike, in line with their long-standing policy of not discussing operations outside the country. However, citing a pre-emptive right to self-defense against Iran, Israel has carried out “hundreds” of bombing and missile strikes against Syria since 2011. Syria has repeatedly protested the strikes as a violation of its sovereignty, to no avail.

Sunday’s missile strike is the first major attack since a series of devastating earthquakes killed thousands of people in northern Syria less than two weeks ago. The neighboring Türkiye, which suffered massive death and destruction, received more attention and international aid, with rescuers from around the globe flying in to help.

In Syria’s case, only a few select nations come to its aid, with the government in Damascus blaming Western sanctions and years of a US-led economic blockade and occupation for exacerbating the crisis and hampering relief efforts.

Posted in accordance with Title 17, Section 107, US Code, for noncommercial, educational purposes.