Photo Credit: Ofer Zidon / Flash 90
Israeli F-16 fighter jet in action.

Israeli fighter pilots have allegedly targeted senior members of the Iranian-backed Hezbollah terrorist organization in a surgical strike aimed at the western Damascus headquarters of the Syrian Arab Army’s Fourth Division in Saboura late Tuesday night, according to IDF sources quoted by military journalist Babak Taghvaee. The report is not confirmed by Israeli government officials. The attack was carried out in the second air strike of the night.

An earlier strike targeted at least three weapons depots used by Iranian and Hezbollah forces in areas west of Damascus, including Qatana. An arsenal of Iranian Fajr-5 missiles was being stored in at least one of the weapons warehouses.

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According to the report, the first and second strikes were carried out by F-16I fighter jets coming from Hatzerim Air Base and escorted by F-35i Adir stealth fighter jets interceptors from Nevatim Air Base in southern Israel.

Jerusalem Post journalist Seth J. Frantzman cited information from the Flightradar24.com site overnight reporting that an Iranian Fars Air Qeshm Boeing 747-281F cargo plane departed Damascus International Airport just half an hour before the first air strike was reported. The aircraft 30,000 feet and flew east towards Tehran.

A second plane – Maham Air — also bound for Tehran took off on the same route about 35 minutes later, flying the same route. There have been reports in the past about Fars Air Qeshm transporting weapons to Syria, and to Hezbollah. The U.S. Treasury Department has accused Maham Air of being linked to the IRGC.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.