Six Iranians fighting for the Syrian regime were killed in an Israeli strike in Syria this week.
According to reports, Israeli missiles targeted “military positions and intelligence facilities belonging to Iran and [pro-Iranian] militias” in the southern provinces of Daraa and Quneitra early on Wednesday, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.
Following the attack, Syrian news sources reported that the targets of the Israeli strike in Syria consisted of Assad-regime army bases near al-Harra, where Western intelligence sources previously said Iranian-backed militias are based.
The Tell al-Harra area is a strategically important one near the border with Israel, in the southern Deraa province. The high ground of al-Harra overlooks the Golan Heights. For years it has been used for military outposts including those of Russian armed forces.
The increase of Israeli operations targeting the border regions are indicative of the increased threat the IDF has identified to its north. Last month, Tell al-Harra was targeted by another Israeli rocket attack. That strike was followed by the Israeli air force hitting Syrian positions in the Golan Heights several days later. All of these attacks have been part of Israel’s attempt to push back Iranian-sponsored forces moving in on Israel’s border. Fighters from the Shiite group Hezbollah, the “Lebanese branch” of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, has also been establishing more forward positions near Israel, with the clear intention of preparing for a face-off.
It is these trends that have produced the increased Israeli operations to its north, and will most likely continue to do so.