Explosions heard in Damascus as border tensions rise
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Explosions heard in Damascus as border tensions rise

IDF calls up some reservists, school trips to Golan Heights canceled after Israel sees ‘abnormal’ Iranian troop movements in Syria

The Times of Israel liveblogged Tuesday’s events as they happened.

Netanyahu: Iran placing weapons in Syria ‘for our destruction’

Iran is seeking to base “dangerous weapons” in Syria “to be used against Israel for the specific purpose of our destruction,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tells the leaders of Greece and Cyprus during a trilateral summit in the Cypriot capital Nicosia.

Netanyahu tells Cyprus’s President Nicos Anastasiades: “You said, Mr. President, a minute ago, that it is unimaginable that anyone would challenge the right of the State of Israel to exist. In fact, there is a force that is doing precisely that, and that is the regime in Tehran. It openly calls daily for our destruction, the elimination of Israel from the face of the earth, and it practices unmitigated aggression against us and against anyone else in the region. It has a terror network that is spread throughout the world. It is now seeking to implant very dangerous weapons in Syria to be used against Israel for the specific purpose of our destruction.”

He warns the two leaders that Iran’s ambitions go beyond Israel.

“It is in the interest of everyone to prevent this Iranian aggression. If they reach the Mediterranean, they wish to establish military naval bases in the Mediterranean for Iranian ships and Iranian submarines. This is a palpable threat against all of us. I think that everybody recognizes the malign intentions of Iran, and I think everybody also recognizes Israel’s right of self-defense, which is really our common defense.”

Are Americans against pulling out of the Iran deal, or just don’t know?

Two polls on Americans’ views of the Iran nuclear deal tell us more about the hazards of polling than about what Americans actually think about the deal.

CNN asks Americans whether they believed the US should withdraw from the deal — yes or no. “Almost two-thirds of Americans — 63% — believe that the US should not withdraw from the Iran nuclear agreement,” the network finds.

CBS, however, goes that vital extra step of giving respondents an option to say they “don’t know enough to say.”

A funny thing happens when people are allowed to admit they don’t know: Just 21% oppose withdrawing from the deal, and 21% support it, both dwarfed by the 57% who just don’t know.

North Korea’s Kim meets China’s Xi to talk about ‘regional situation’

Chinese state media quotes North Korean leader Kim Jong Un as saying he met with Chinese President Xi Jinping to inform him about sweeping changes in the region.

“At a crucial time when the regional situation is developing rapidly, Kim said he came to China again to meet with (Xi) and inform him of the situation,” the official Xinhua News Agency quotes Kim as telling Xi.

State media says the two leaders met Monday and Tuesday in Dalian, a northern Chinese port city.

Neither leader is quoted as directly referring to Kim’s meeting late last month with South Korean President Moon Jae-in or his planned summit in coming weeks with US President Donald Trump.

However, Chinese state broadcaster CCTV quotes Xi as saying China “supports North Korea to stick to denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and supports North Korea and the US in solving the peninsula issue through dialogue and consultation.”

— AP

US consulate in Jerusalem suspends service ahead of May 14 embassy move

The US consulate in Jerusalem, which is set to be upgraded to America’s embassy in Israel on May 14, is shutting down all consular services as officials prepare for the move.

Services will stop being offered from tomorrow, May 9, and will return to operations after Tuesday, May 15. Only some urgent cases will be taken care of during this period.

Those seeking consular services while the Jerusalem site is closed must travel to the US Embassy in Tel Aviv or its branch office in Haifa.

Egyptian soldiers who fell in Israel’s Independence War commemorated

Israeli and Egyptian officials commemorated the Egyptian soldiers who fell in battle during Israel’s Independence War in 1948-9 as part of Egypt’s invasion force.

The ceremony, held at the “Ad Halom” — “No farther” — memorial in Ashdod, was joined by Egypt’s ambassador to Israel Hazem Khairat, as well as IDF and Israeli Foreign Ministry officials.

Egyptian diplomatic officials and IDF officers take part in a memorial ceremony for Egyptian soldiers who fell during the country’s invasion of Israel during the 1948-9 Independence War. (Courtesy Israel’s Foreign Ministry)

The memorial was established in 1989 as part of the implementation of the Israel-Egyptian peace treaty.

North Korea’s Kim says he’s committed to denuclearization

Chinese state media quotes North Korean leader Kim Jong Un as telling Chinese President Xi Jinping that his country remains committed to denuclearization and has no need to possess nuclear weapons if a “relevant party” drops its “hostile policy and security threats” against it, in a clear reference to the United States.

“I hope to build mutual trust with the US through dialogue,” Kim is quoted as saying. He says a political resolution of tensions on the Korean Peninsula and denuclearization should proceed in stages, with all sides moving in concert.

The US government has demanded that North Korea immediately commit to denuclearization.

Chinese media says Kim met with Xi on Monday and Tuesday. Kim met last month with South Korean President Moon Jae-in and is preparing for a summit with US President Donald Trump, possibly as early as this month.

— AP

Israel has briefed 22 countries on Iranian nuclear archive

Israel’s National Security Adviser Meir Ben Shabat says Israel has briefed 22 nations on the nuclear archive it reportedly smuggled out of Iran earlier this year.

Netanyahu, speaking to journalists ahead of his return flight from a trilateral Cypriot-Greek-Israeli summit in Cyprus, says Israel “is not looking for escalation, but is preparing for any scenario.”

“Iran is trying to change the status quo, according to which it does not deploy its army to Syria, and they are declaring the purpose [of the military deployment]. It’s not Islamic State,” Netanyahu says.

Police, rescuers train for aviation emergency at Ben Gurion

Israel Police officers, along with search and rescue forces, are currently leading a massive training exercise to prepare them to handle an aviation emergency at Ben Gurion Airport.

The exercise simulates an aviation disaster on a commercial flight from Israel carrying 300 passengers and crew that crashes due to a mechanical error in the plane.

The simulation is one of many exercises carried out by the Israel Police to test the readiness of its forces for any type of emergency situation at the country’s largest airport.

Police and rescue forces practice responding to an aviation disaster at Ben Gurion Airport, May 8, 2018. (Courtesy)
Police and rescue forces practice responding to an aviation disaster at Ben Gurion Airport, May 8, 2018. (Courtesy)
Police and rescue forces practice responding to an aviation disaster at Ben Gurion Airport, May 8, 2018. (Courtesy)

— Jacob Magid

Holocaust-denier ‘Nazi grandma’ arrested after failing to show up for prison

The Holocaust denier known as the “Nazi grandma” is arrested by German police days after she failed to appear at the prison where she was to start a two-year term for Holocaust denial.

Ursula Haverbeck, 89, had been ordered to appear on April 23 at the prison in the town of Bielefeld after being sentenced for incitement caused by public Holocaust denial. Prosecutors on May 4 issued an order for police to locate and arrest her.

She was located at her home in central Germany on Monday. She was arrested and immediately sent to prison, according to reports. The Associated Press had reported that the home did not look inhabited, citing piled up mail on the front doorstep.

Haverbeck has been convicted and sentenced to prison on several occasions for writing articles denying the Holocaust and incitement to hate. She has appealed all the decisions, however, and had yet to spend any time in jail.

— JTA

Cyprus, Greece, and Israel aim for gas pipeline deal this year

NICOSIA, Cyprus — Cyprus, Greece, and Israel aim to sign an agreement this year to develop a gas pipeline in the Eastern Mediterranean, Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades says after three-way talks in the capital Nicosia.

“This construction [of the pipeline] will contribute to the security of our energy supply and of the energy supply of the European Union,” Anastasiades says after meeting the Greek and Israeli leaders.

“We reaffirmed our commitment to work with resolution to sign an intergovernmental agreement in 2018,” he adds.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says the three countries were making “serious efforts” towards constructing the pipeline.

With financial backing from the European Union, the project envisages 2,100 kilometers of pipeline to carry gas from fields close to Cyprus and Israel.

The long-term project has an estimated cost of 5.8 billion euros and is not expected to get off the ground for a number of years, with the pipeline not due to be operational before 2025.

— AFP

IDF chief cancels talk amid rising tensions with Iran on northern border

IDF chief of staff Lt. Gen. Gadi Eisenkot cancels his speech slated for 8 p.m. tonight at the Herzliya Conference, citing a scheduling conflict.

Channel 10 and Hadashot television both report that the cancellation is believed to be connected to rising tensions with Iran on Israel’s northern borders.

Bennett warns ‘Syria will be Iran’s Vietnam’

Education Minister Naftali Bennett tells the Herzliya Conference that “Syria will be Iran’s Vietnam.”

“Iran sends others to die for it,” Bennett tells the security conference, and warns that in any future war, Israel will consider any act of aggression by Hezbollah as an act of war by the Lebanese state.

“Nasrallah portrays himself as the defender of the Lebanese people, but he must understand that if he plays the Iranian card he will decimate his country.”

Trump tells Macron he intends to leave Iran nuclear deal — NYT

US President Donald Trump tells French President Emmanuel Macron in recent hours that he intends to announce that the US will withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal, The New York Times reports citing “a person briefed on the conversation.”

“The United States is preparing to reinstate all sanctions it had waived as part of the nuclear accord — and impose additional economic penalties as well, the person said,” according to the Times.

Hamas aims for big turnout in next week’s Gaza marches

A Hamas official says the group hopes to mobilize a large turnout for next week’s Gaza border protests, the apex of the terror group’s six-week effort to break through the border fence.

Ghazi Hamad says Tuesday that “there are many tools” to encourage participation, including making phone calls and offering more bus shuttles.

Weekly border protests began March 30 and are to culminate in two days of mass demonstrations next week. One, on Tuesday, marks the Palestinian “nakba,” or “catastrophe,” the Palestinian term for the expulsion and flight of hundreds of thousands of Palestinians during the 1948 war.

Hamas has sent mixed signals about a possible border breach. Hamas says protests will continue “as a long-term strategy,” saying it is “less expensive” than going into a military confrontation with Israel.

— Agencies

Trump to cite Netanyahu revelations of Iran nuke archive — report

Just two hours before US President Donald Trump’s expected announcement that the US is reinstating some of the sanctions lifted under the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, the Washington Post is reporting that he will use Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s April 30 revelations about Iran’s nuclear archive in his statement.

“In his announcement, Trump is expected to describe the action as one element of a tougher position on Iran, although it remained unclear whether he will propose any additional policy elements to deal with Iran’s regional activities and ballistic missiles,” the Post reports.

“He will cite Iranian documents about a 1990s-era covert nuclear weapons project as proof that Iran lied about the extent of its program, two people familiar with discussions about the decision said. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu unveiled the documents last week.”

Ahead of US embassy move, security chiefs meet over expected violence

The heads of Israel’s security services — the Israel Defense Forces, Shin Bet, and Israel Police — meet in the army’s Tel Aviv headquarters to discuss the potential for increased violence from Palestinian terror groups and their forces’ general readiness, the army says.

“As part of the meeting, a situational assessment concerning the Palestinian arena was discussed, as well as the preparedness of the security forces for the coming period and inter-agency cooperation,” the army says in a statement.

Israel expects to see heightened tension among Palestinians in the coming days, ahead of the US embassy’s move from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem on May 14 and the Nakba Day protests — commemorating the displacement of Palestinians after Israel’s founding — the next day.

Israeli defense officials are also concerned over an expected retaliatory strike by Iran or one of its proxies against military sites in northern Israel, in response to recent airstrikes against Iranian targets in Syria that have been attributed to Israel.

The meeting included IDF chief Lt. Gen. Gadi Eisenkot, Shin Bet head Nadav Argaman, and Israel Police Commissioner Roni Alsheich, as well as senior officers from each service.

— Judah Ari Gross

Macron’s office denies Trump told him he’s pulling out of nuclear deal

French President Emmanuel Macron’s office denies that US President Donald Trump indicated to the French leader that the US would withdraw from the Iranian nuclear deal by reinstating sanctions on Iran, Reuters reports.

The New York Times reported earlier today that Trump had notified Macron he would reinstate sanctions, effectively walking away from the 2015 agreement.

Trump to withdraw US from Iran nuclear deal — sources

Multiple US-based media outlets say that sources familiar with the decision have confirmed that US President Donald Trump is following through on his campaign promise and withdrawing the US from the nuclear accord with Iran.

The reports come an hour before Trump is expected to make the announcement.

It isn’t immediately clear which sanctions lifted under the deal that Trump plans to immediately re-impose, but it will take some six months to reinstate many of them.

Trump still has several options. A more limited move could leave Trump more room to potentially stay in the deal if other members agree to toughen it.

The US president has long criticized the 2015 agreement, which lifted most US and international sanctions against the country. In return, Iran agreed to restrictions on its nuclear program making it impossible to produce a bomb, along with rigorous inspections.

— AP contributed to this report

Jerusalem Police plan massive deployment around US embassy ceremony next week

Jerusalem police are planning for a massive security operation to prevent any attempts by Palestinians to disrupt the US embassy’s move to Jerusalem on May 15.

These preparations include deploying some 1,750 cops around the southern Jerusalem site that is currently the US consulate in the city, and the forming of a massive police line separating the compound from the nearby Palestinian village of Tsur Baher, Hadashot television news reports.

The report also says police will prevent the mosques of Tsur Baher from sounding the call to prayer during the ceremony, out of a concern that the mosque loudspeakers will be used to disrupt the event.

Iran’s Rouhani will respond to Trump tonight

Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani will respond on state television on Tuesday, shortly after US counterpart Donald Trump’s expected withdrawal from the nuclear deal, an Iranian official tells AFP.

“If Trump speaks, President Rouhani will respond tonight” on television, says the official on condition of anonymity.

A US official in Washington tells AFP that Trump will announce he is pulling the United States out of the nuclear deal signed with world powers in 2015.

— AFP

Trump to withdrawal from nuke deal, but delay reimposing sanctions – report

Members of Congress say US President Donald Trump will announce the US withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal — but won’t immediately reimpose sanctions on Tehran. According to the unnamed lawmakers, Trump is expected to announce a three-month waiting period to renegotiate some of the elements in the deal that Trump has criticized.

‘Abnormal’ Iranian military movements in Syria sparks high alert in Israel

The IDF instructs local governments in the Golan Heights to open bomb shelters to residents, citing “abnormal movements of Iranian forces in Syria.”

The army says it has deployed air defenses in northern Israel and “there is high readiness of IDF troops for an attack.”

The military calls on residents to listen for security instructions.

“The IDF is ready and prepared for a variety of scenarios and warns that any action against Israel will be answered with a fierce retaliation,” the army says.

— Judah Ari Gross

Golan Heights mayor: ‘Army told us to open bomb shelters’

The mayor of Katzrin, the largest town on the Israeli side of the Golan Heights, confirms to Hadashot television that local governments in the north “received instructions from the IDF to open shelters.”

According to the mayor, Dima Apartsev, “our shelters have been open for a week. We’re ready, but things are still at our regular routine. We’re just keeping our eyes open.”

Trump begins by noting Iran’s sponsorship of terror, involvement in conflicts

Trump begins to speak:

“Today I want to update Americans on our efforts to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon. The Iranian regime is the leading state sponsor of terror. It exports dangerous missiles, fuels conflict across the Middle East and supports terrorist proxies and militias such as Hezbollah, Hamas, the Taliban and Al-Qaeda. Over the years Iran and its proxies have bombed American servicemen and installations [and committed a variety of other attacks against Americans and US interests].”

“The Iranian regime has funded its long reign of chaos and terror, by plundering the wealth of its people. No action taken by the regime has been more dangerous than its pursuit of nuclear weapons and the means of delivering them.”

Trump: Nuke deal was supposed to stop an Iranian nuke, but won’t

Trump says:

“In theory, the so-called Iran deal was supposed to protect the United States and its allies from the lunacy of an Iranian nuclear bomb, a weapon that will only endanger the survival of the Iranian regime.

“In fact, the deal allowed Iran to continue enriching uranium and over time reach the brink of nuclear breakout. It lifted crippling sanctions in exchange for very weak limits on its nuclear activity and no limits at all on its other malign behavior.

“In other words, at the point where the US had maximum leverage, this disastrous deal gave this regime — and it’s a regime of great terror — many billions of dollars, some of it in actual cash, a great embarrassment to me as a citizen and to all citizens of the United States. A constructive deal could easily have been struck at the time.”

Trump: Israeli evidence proves Iran’s real intentions

Trump says:

“At the heart of the [Iran nuclear] deal was a fiction that a murderous regime desired only a peace nuclear program. Today we have definitive proof this was a lie.

“Last week, Israel published documents concealed by Iran showing that Iran” planned to continue its nuclear weapons program.

“This was one-sided deal that shouldn’t have been made. It didn’t bring calm, and it didn’t bring peace.

“In the years since it was reached, Iran’s military budget grew by almost 40 percent while its economy is doing badly. It used new funds to build nuclear-capable missiles and sow havoc in the Middle East and beyond.”

Trump: If nuke deal stands, it will lead to nuclear arms race

Trump says:

“The [Iran nuclear] agreement was so badly negotiated that even if the regime completely abides by it,” it can still obtain nuclear weapons.

“The sunset provisions are totally unacceptable.

“If I allow this deal to stand, there will soon be nuclear arms race in the Middle East.

“Making matters worse, [the deal] lacks adequate provisions to prevent, detect and punish cheating, and doesn’t even have the unqualified right to inspect [certain sites in Iran], including military facilities.”

Trump: Deal so ‘rotten’ US must withdraw from it

Trump says:

The nuclear deal doesn’t stop Iran from developing “missiles capable of carrying nuclear warheads.”

“Finally, the deal does nothing to constrain Iran’s activities, including its support for terrorism. Since the agreement, Iran’s bloody ambitions have grown only more brazen.

“Given these glaring flaws, I announced last October it must be renegotiated or terminated. Three months later I made clear if the deal can’t be fixed, the US won’t be party to the agreement.

“Over last six months, we’ve engaged extensively with allies across the world and friends in the Middle East. We are unified in our understanding of the threat and in our conviction that Iran must never acquire nuclear weapons.

“It is clear to me that we cannot prevent an Iranian nuclear bomb under the decaying and rotten structure of the current agreement. The Iran deal is defective at its core. If we do nothing, we know exactly what will happen. In a short time, the world’s leading state sponsor of terror will be on the cusp of acquiring the world’s most dangerous weapon.

“Therefore I’m announcing that the United States will withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal.”

Trump: Economic sanctions to be reimposed on Iran

Trump says he’s now signing a US presidential memorandum “to begin reinstating economic sanctions on the Iranian regime.”

These are “the highest level of economic sanctions. America will not be held hostage to nuclear blackmail. We will not allow american cities to be threatened with destruction and we will not allow a regime that shouts ‘death to America’ to gain access to the deadliest weapons on earth.

“The United States no longer makes empty threats,” he adds. “When I make promises, I keep them.

“As we exit deal, working with our allies to find a real, comprehensive solution to the Iranian threat, its missile program, terrorist activities worldwide and block its menacing activity in the Middle East.

“In the meantime, powerful sanctions go into effect. If the regime continues in its nuclear ambitions, it will have bigger problems than it has ever had.”

Trump to Iranian people: This regime plundered you

Trump turns to the Iranian people:

“To the Iranian people, it’s now been 40 years since this regime” took over the country and engaged in aggression around the world by “plundering its people.”

“Iran’s leaders say they refuse to negotiate a new deal. And that’s fine. If I was in their place I’d probably say the same.

“When they’re ready, I’m ready and able to talk about a new deal. Great things can happen for Iran. There’s been enough suffering, death and destruction.”

Netanyahu: Israel ‘fully supports’ Trump withdrawal from nuke deal

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responds to Trump in English on live television:

“Israel fully supports President Trump’s bold decision today to reject the disastrous nuclear deal with the terrorist regime in Tehran.”

Israel opposed the deal “from the start” because “it paves Iran’s path to an entire arsenal of nuclear bombs.”

Removal of sanctions “has already produced disastrous results.”

“The deal didn’t push war further away, it actually brought it closer. The deal didn’t reduce Iran’s aggression, it dramatically increased it,” Netanyahu says.

Saudi envoy to Washington says Riyadh supports Trump’s withdrawal

The Saudi ambassador to the US, Khalid bin Salman, says his country fully supports Trump’s withdrawal of the US from the Iran nuclear deal.

In a series of tweets, the envoy says:

“The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia fully supports the measures taken by @POTUS with regards to the JCPOA. we always had reservations with regards to sunset clauses, ballistic missiles program, and Iran’s support for terrorism in the region.

“As I said before with regards to the deal, we are on auto pilot heading towards a mountain. Deal has fueled Iran’s malicious expansion driven by its extremist ideology. It provided Iran with a financial windfall that it used to further sectarian strife/chaos in the region.

“Since deal was inked, instead of behaving like a responsible member of the int’l community, the regime doubled down on its support for terror, providing dangerous weapons (such as ballistic missiles) to terrorist proxies including the Houthis In Yemen to target civilians in KSA.

“KSA always believed that the int’l community cannot address Iran’s pursuit of WMD, without addressing the mass destruction Iran is inflecting on the region. Any future deal must address Iran’s ballistic missile program, and its increasing financial/military support for terrorism.”

Rivlin: Trump announcement makes free world safer

President Reuven Rivlin welcomes Trump’s announcement:

“The decision made by the President of the United States constitutes an important and significant step in ensuring the security of the State of Israel, the security of the region and the security of the entire free world.

“Alongside the nuclear threat we do not, for a moment, forget the arms race Iran is leading on our borders, and we follow the developments closely and responsibly in order to protect the security of our citizens.

“The threat of Iranian consolidation is not a threat to the State of Israel alone, and therefore international pressure is necessary in the struggle against this danger.”

French president Macron says Europeans ‘regret’ Trump decision

Emmanuel Macron says France, Germany and Britain regret Trump’s decision to leave the nuclear deal.

He tweets:

“France, Germany, and the UK regret the US decision to leave the JCPOA. The nuclear non-proliferation regime is at stake.”

EU ‘determined to preserve’ Iran nuclear deal — Mogherini

The EU is “determined to preserve” the Iran nuclear deal, the bloc’s diplomatic chief Federica Mogherini says after US President Donald Trump said the US was pulling out.

The 2015 accord “is delivering on its goal which is guaranteeing that Iran doesn’t develop nuclear weapons, and the European Union is determined to preserve it,” Mogherini says, warning she was “particularly worried” by Trump’s announcement of new sanctions.

— AFP

Top Democratic senator says Trump decision a ‘historic mistake’

US Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, the no. 2 Democrat in the Senate, is calling the US withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal “a mistake of historic proportions.”

He says breaking the Iran deal increases the danger that Iran will restart its nuclear weapons program, which threatens Israel and “destabilizes the entire Middle East.”

Durbin says Trump’s action “isolates the United States from the world at a time when we need our allies to come together to address nuclear threats elsewhere, particularly in Korea.”

Trump said earlier Tuesday that “great things” can happen for the Iranian people because of the US withdrawal. The Republican president predicted that Iranians would someday “want to make a new and lasting deal” and that “when they do, I am ready, willing and able.”

— AP

Iran’s leader warns it could enrich uranium more than before nuke deal

Iran’s president is saying there’s a “short time” to negotiate with the countries remaining in the nuclear deal, warning his country could start enriching uranium more than ever in the coming weeks.

President Hassan Rouhani makes the statement Tuesday immediately after US President Donald Trump said he was pulling the US out of the nuclear deal.

Rouhani speaks live on Iranian state television. He says he will be sending Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif to countries remaining in the accord.

He says, “I have ordered Iran’s atomic organization that whenever it is needed, we will start enriching uranium more than before.”

He says Iran would start this “in the next weeks.”

— AP

IDF calls up some reservists amid ‘abnormal’ Iranian troop movements

A small number of reservists are being called up as the army put itself on high alert in northern Israel following “abnormal” activities by Iranian forces in Syria, an IDF spokesperson says.

The spokesperson would not elaborate on which units are being called up, but media reports indicated they were mostly from air defense, intelligence and Home Front Command units.

Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman is also meeting with the heads of Israel’s defense services in the army’s Tel Aviv headquarters to discuss the security situation, his office says.

— Judah Ari Gross

Explosions seen in alleged military base near Damascus

Reports on Arabic-language Twitter and elsewhere say explosions are seen in a possible military base near Damascus.

The reports follow unconfirmed reports overseas that Israeli aircraft are mobilizing against “abnormal” Iranian troop movements in Syria.

Golan Heights class trips canceled as border tensions mount

The Education Ministry says it is canceling all class trips to the Golan Heights amid a sudden spike in tensions between Israel and Iran along the northern border.

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