IDF responds to mortar shell spillover from Syria into Israeli territory

Two positions targeted by IDF following spillover into Israeli territory; Ya’alon addresses incident as “a challenge to our sovereignty, and a crossing of our red lines”

IDF soldiers on the Israeli-Syrian border (Reuters)

IDF soldiers patrol on the Syrian border with Israel

The Israeli Defense Forces conducted two artillery strikes on southwest Quneitra, Syria in response to two mortar shells that landed in Israeli territory in the Golan Heights overnight Sunday and again on Monday. The mortar shells were not targeted at Israel, but a spillover from fighting in Syria.

According to the IDF, two artillery strikes were carried out on positions responsible for the spillover, and that the IDF “viewed the Syrian army as responsible for any fire emanating within its territory, and that the IDF will not allow any attempts to harm Israel’s sovereignty or citizens.”

While no damages or injuries were reported in Israel, Syrian media claims that a deputy brigade commander of the Syrian Army was injured, with mixed reports claiming two Syrian Army soldiers were killed.

Israel’s Defense Minister, Moshe Ya’alon, stated Monday morning, “The projectiles which landed in Israeli territory both yesterday and today were fired from Syrian artillery pieces which are currently involved in the fighting there are a challenge to our sovereignty, and a crossing of our red lines” while IDF Spokesman Lt. Co. Peter Lerner stated, ”Israel will not tolerate violation of its sovereignty; the Syrian military is responsible and accountable for any aggression emanating from Syria. The IDF remains committed in defending the civilians and safeguarding the borders of Israel from all threats.”

Spillovers into Israeli territory have been common over the past two years, a result of intense clashes and fighting between Assad’s Regime and various rebel forces in Syria’s civil war.

The IDF is on high alert in the Golan Heights following the incident.