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Israel beefs up presence near Syria border

March 10, 2013 at 7:33 AM

HAIFA, Israel, March 10 (UPI) -- The Israeli army has reinforced its presence near the Syrian border, where fighting between rebel and pro-Syrian regime forces has intensified, officials said.

Soldiers are providing security for contract workers building the border fence with electronic sensors between the two countries, Ynetnews.com said Sunday. The fence is just one of a number of measures taken by Israel to prepare for various scenarios Israel could be confronted with in a post-Bashar Assad era, the Israeli news website said.

The army is concerned the contract workers may be targeted, or of possible infiltration attempts or bomb attacks, in addition to cross-border mortar fire that has occurred a number of times in recent months, The Jerusalem Post reported.

Radical rebels have taken control of a number of Syrian villages close to Israel's border and the area has become the scene of intense fighting between rebel and pro-regime forces, the Post said, quoting recent Israeli security evaluations.

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