2 dead after Israeli airstrike on Syrian weapons facility

By Sara Shayanian  |  Sept. 7, 2017 at 8:59 AM
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Sept. 7 (UPI) -- Israeli missiles struck a Syrian military and scientific research facility in the northeastern city of Masyaf on Thursday morning.

The Syrian General Command of the Army and Armed Forces confirmed two army personnel dead and major material damage to the site that is responsible for developing, producing, and distributing nonconventional weapons, known as the Scientific Studies and Research Center.

The Syrian army saw the attacks as retaliation for their recent victories.

"This aggression comes in a desperate attempt to raise the collapsed morale of the ISIS terrorists after the sweeping victories achieved by the Syrian Arab army against terrorism at more than one front, and it affirms the direct support provided by the Israeli entity to the ISIS and other terrorist organizations," said the Syrian army command of the airstrikes.

Israel has conducted nearly 100 airstrikes since the beginning of the Syrian civil war, with this one marking an escalation in tensions between the two governments.

"This is the first time that the target which was attacked was a formal Syrian facility," Maj. Gen. Yaakov Amidror, a former national security advisor to Netanyahu, said.

The military center's employees were sanctioned by the United Nations earlier this year after a chemical weapons attack killed 83 people in Khan Sheikhoun.

The latest attack comes just two days after the Syrian army's victory over the Islamic State in the city of Deir Ezzor.

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