Second mortar shell of day hits Golan Heights
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Second mortar shell of day hits Golan Heights

IAF earlier retaliated with airstrikes on Syrian army posts, after a likely errant shell exploded in Israel in the afternoon

Smoke rising from the Syrian village of Jubata al-Khashab, where Israeli aircraft struck Syrian army positions after fire from its war-torn neighbor hit the Golan, September 10, 2016. (AFP/Jalaa Marey)
Smoke rising from the Syrian village of Jubata al-Khashab, where Israeli aircraft struck Syrian army positions after fire from its war-torn neighbor hit the Golan, September 10, 2016. (AFP/Jalaa Marey)

A second mortar shell fired from Syria struck the Golan Heights on Saturday evening, Channel 2 News reported, hours after a shell that exploded in the area led to retaliatory Israeli strikes.

The shell exploded on the border, causing no casualties or damage. It was the fourth such incident this week.

Earlier a mortar shell had exploded inside Israeli territory. It too did not cause harm. A military spokeswoman said the projectile was most likely unintentional “spillover” from the internal fighting in Syria.

A short time later, the Israeli Air Force struck artillery targets belonging to the Syrian army, the army said.

“The Syrian government [is] accountable for this blatant breach of Israeli sovereignty, the IDF will continue to act in order to safeguard Israel and its civilians,” it added.

The civil war in Syria has generated a number of such incidents over the years. Israel has said it will not tolerate any such spillover projectiles and holds the Syrian regime responsible for all errant fire, regardless of the source. The IDF frequently retaliates against stray missile strikes inside Israeli territory.

The Israeli Air Force overnight Wednesday-Thursday hit a number of rocket launchers belonging to the Syrian army after the earlier projectile struck an open area on the Israeli side of the Golan on Wednesday evening. The shell caused no injuries or damage, after reportedly landing in an open field in Kibbutz Merom Golan.

On Sunday, a mortar round fired from Syria hit an open area on the Israeli side of the Golan demilitarized zone, causing no injuries or damage. In response, the IDF later on Sunday struck Syrian army artillery targets on the plateau.

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