Military Wiki
Iran–Israel conflict during
the Syrian civil war
Part of the Iran–Israel proxy conflict, Iranian and Israeli involvement in the Syrian civil war
Date30 January 2013 – present
LocationSyria–Israel ceasefire line, Syrian territories
Result ongoing
 Israel  Iran
Commanders and leaders
Israel Benjamin Netanyahu Iran Ali Khamenei
Hassan Nasrallah
Syria Bashar al-Assad
Casualties and losses
None 497 Iranians, Syrian soldiers and pro-Iranian militiamen killed between 2018 and 2020[1] (SOHR claim)
12 civilians killed by Israeli air forces[1] (SOHR claim)

The Iran–Israel conflict during the Syrian civil war refers to the Iranian-Israeli standoff in and around Syria during the course of the Syrian conflict. With increasing Iranian involvement in Syria from 2011 onwards, the conflict shifted from a proxy war into a direct confrontation by early 2018.[2]

On several occasions, between 2013 and 2017, Israel reportedly carried out or supported attacks on Hezbollah and Iranian targets within Syrian territories or Lebanon. One of the first reliably reported incidents of this kind took place on 30 January 2013, when Israeli aircraft struck a Syrian convoy allegedly transporting Iranian weapons to Hezbollah.[3] Habitually, Israel refused to comment on the incident, and allegedly so that the Syrian government would not feel obliged to retaliate.[3]

Syria confirmed some reports regarding Israeli Air Force incidents in May 2013, December 2014, and April 2015, and denied others. Israel systematically refused to comment on the alleged targeting of Hezbollah and Ba'athist Syrian targets in Syrian territory. In 2015, suspected Hezbollah militants launched a retaliatory attack on Israeli forces in Shebaa farms. In March 2017, Syria launched anti-aircraft missiles toward Israeli-controlled parts of the Golan Heights, allegedly targeting Israeli Air Force aircraft, which Syria claimed were on their way to attack targets in Palmyra, Syria. After the incident, the State of Israel stated it was targeting weapons shipments headed toward anti-Israeli forces, specifically Hezbollah, located in Lebanon. Israel denied Syria's claim that one jet fighter was shot down with another one damaged. Israel has not reported any pilots or aircraft missing in Syria, or anywhere else in the Middle East following the incident. According to some sources, the incident was the first time Israeli officials clearly confirmed an Israeli strike on a Hezbollah convoy during the Syrian Civil War.[4]

By early December 2017, the Israeli Air Force confirmed at least six years of nearly 100 attacks in Syria, all targeting arms convoys of Hezbollah and the Ba'athists.[5] In September 2018, the Israeli Air Force stated that it had conducted over 200 airstrikes on Iranian targets in 2017–2018 alone.[6]



On 30 January 2013, Israeli aircraft allegedly struck a Syrian convoy transporting Iranian weapons to Hezbollah.[3] Other sources stated the targeted site was a military research center in Jamraya responsible for developing biological and chemical weapons.[7]

Two additional air strikes, also attributed to Israel, reportedly took place on 3 and 5 May 2013. Both allegedly targeted long-ranged weapons sent from Iran to Hezbollah.[8][9]

According to anonymous US officials, Israel launched another airstrike or cruise missile attack on 5 July. It allegedly targeted Russian-made Yakhont anti-ship missiles near the city of Latakia, and killed several Syrian troops.[10]

An unidentified U.S. administration official on 31 October said Israeli warplanes struck a Syrian base near the port of Latakia, targeting missiles that Israel thought might be transferred to its Lebanese militia enemy Hezbollah.[11]

The relationship between the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) and the Islamic Republic of Iran strengthened as a result of Hamas moving away from Iran due to differing positions on the Syrian Civil War. Iran rewarded the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine's pro-Assad stance with an increase in financial and military assistance. Abu Ahmad Fouad, a PFLP political-bureau member said that the group might retaliate toward Israel if the United States bombs Syria.[12]

On 15 December 2013 a Lebanese sniper opened fire at an Israeli vehicle traveling near the border area of Rosh Hanikra, killing a soldier inside. Several hours later, the Israeli military said it shot two Lebanese soldiers after spotting "suspicious movement" in the same area.[13]


Syrian opposition sources, as well as Lebanese sources, reported that another strike happened in Latakia on 26 January 2014. Explosions were reported in the city and Israeli planes were reported over Lebanon. The target was allegedly S-300 missiles.[14]

It was reported that Israeli aircraft carried out two airstrikes against Hezbollah facilities in Lebanon near the border with Syria on 24 February 2014, killing several militants. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights claimed the attack targeted a Hezbollah missile base.[15]

On 7 December 2014 Israeli jets allegedly bombed areas near Damascus international airport and in the town of Dimas, near the border with Lebanon. According to foreign reports the attack targeted a warehouse of advanced S-300 missiles, which were en route from Syria to Hezbollah in Lebanon.[16] Al Arabiya reported that two Hezbollah militants were killed in the strikes, including a senior military official.[17]


On 18 January 2015, Israeli helicopters allegedly attacked a Hezbollah's convoy in the Syrian-controlled part of Golan Heights, killing six prominent members of Hezbollah and six IRGC commanders, including a General.[18][19] On 28 January, Hezbollah fired an anti-tank missile at an Israeli military convoy in the Shebaa farms, killing two soldiers and wounding seven.[20] Israel responded with at least 50 artillery shells across the border into southern Lebanon, in which a Spanish UN peacekeeper was killed.[21]

On 25 April 2015, a series of attacks attributed to the Israeli Air Force were made in the al-Qalamoun region of Syria against Hezbollah camps and weapons convoys in two brigade bases.[22] Al-Nusra Front, however, has also claimed the attacks.[23]

On 29 July 2015, Israeli airplanes reportedly struck a vehicle located in a Druse village in southwestern Syria, killing Hezbollah men and a pro-Assad militiaman.[24] A second airstrike targeted a military base along the Syrian-Lebanese border belonging to a pro-Syrian Palestinian faction.[25]

On 20 and 21 August 2015, after four rockets hit the Golan Heights and Upper Galilee, Israel allegedly launched airstrikes in Syria, killing several militants.[26]

According to Syrian media, on 31 October 2015, Israeli aircraft attacked numerous Hezbollah targets in southern Syria, close to the border with Lebanon in the Qalamoun Mountains region. Estimated targets included a weapons convoy destined for Hezbollah.[27] It was reported another Israeli airstrike near Damascus airport on 11 November[28] that targeted Hezbollah weapons warehouses.[29]

The Syrian opposition reported an Israeli airstrike in the Qualamoun area of the Syria–Lebanon border on 23 November 2015. According to these sources, the strike killed 13 Syrian troops and Hezbollah fighters, and left dozens wounded, including four seriously. The Qualamoun region has been a major transit point for Hezbollah fighters and other logistical equipment to and from Syria.[30] According to Syrian sources, Israeli aircraft attacked again Syrian army and Hezbollah targets in the area around Qalamoun on 28 November, causing dead and wounded among Hezbollah fighters.[31]

On 19 December 2015, eight people, including Samir Kuntar and other Hezbollah commanders were killed by an explosion in the outskirts of Damascus. According to official Syrian sources, Kuntar was killed by a "terrorist rocket attack".[32] On 20 December 2015, Syrian Information Minister Omran al-Zoubi described the incident as a terrorist operation "plotted beforehand", noting that Syrian authorities were carrying out an investigation to find out how the operation happened.[32] Hezbollah claimed that the building was destroyed by an air-to-surface missile launched by Israeli Air Force jets.[33][34][35] On 21 December, the Free Syrian Army released a video clip claiming responsibility for killing Kuntar.[36][37]

Sources affiliated with the Syrian opposition reported that Israeli aircraft attacked seven positions belonging to Hezbollah in the Qalamoun Mountains area on 26 December 2015.[38]


Arab media reported that on 30 November 2016, Israeli jets allegedly struck a Syrian military compound in Damascus and a Hezbollah weapons convoy in the Damascus-Beirut highway.[39]

On 7 December 2016, Syria and Hezbollah accused Israel of launching surface-to-surface missiles targeting the Mezzeh airbase near Damascus. Unnamed Syrian sources told Lebanese newspaper Elnashra that the strikes targeted the airport's runway and operations command center, while another unnamed source said that the strikes targeted the regime's 4th division operations center at the airport.[40] A Syrian opposition group said the target was a convoy of chemical weapons en route to Hezbollah.[41]


On 12 January 2017, Israeli warplanes were blamed for striking the Mezzeh Airbase in rural Damascus. According to Al-Masdar field correspondent, the target was an ammunition depot, causing a massive explosion that could be heard from the Syrian capital.[42]

On 22 February 2017, Israeli jets struck a Hezbollah weapons shipment near Damascus.[43]

The March 2017 Israel–Syria incident took place on 17 March 2017, when several Syrian S-200 missiles were fired at Israeli Air Force jets, allegedly aiming to attack targets in Syria, near a military installation in Palmyra, and one missile was shot down by an "aerial defense system", likely an Arrow missile.[44][45][46] The State of Israel has stated it was targeting weapons shipments headed toward anti-Israeli forces, specifically Hezbollah, located in Lebanon.[44] Israel denied Syria's claim that one jet fighter was shot down and another damaged. Israel has not reported any pilots or aircraft missing in Syria, or anywhere else in the Middle East following the raids. Also, neither Syria nor Hezbollah have shown photos or video of downed Israeli aircraft or personnel. According to some sources, the incident was the first time Israeli officials clearly confirmed an Israeli strike on Syrian territory during the Syrian Civil War, though IDF declined any comment concerning the location of targets.[47]

On 27 April 2017, Syria's state-run SANA news agency said that there was an explosion felt in Damascus International Airport at 3:42 am. No casualties were reported. The blast was reportedly felt 15 kilometres (9.3 mi) away.[48] The Israeli Intelligence Minister Yisrael Katz appeared to take responsibility for the explosion, telling Army Radio that "The incident in Syria corresponds completely with Israel's policy to act to prevent Iran's smuggling of advanced weapons via Syria to Hezbollah."[49] Two rebel sources told Reuters that "five strikes hit an ammunition depot used by Iran-backed militias."

On 7 September 2017, the Guardian reported that the Syrian military said in a statement that Israeli jets carried out airstrikes on the Syrian Scientific Studies and Research Centre, a Syrian government military research facility where it was rumoured to contain chemical weapons near the city of Masyaf, Hama Governorate, killing at least two Syrian Army soldiers.[citation needed] The missiles were fired from Lebanese air space; the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and other sources identified the target as the al-Talai facility; and Syrian opposition sources said four Israeli aircraft were involved in the strike. The US claims the research centre developed the sarin gas weapon allegedly used in the Khan Shaykhun chemical attack; Yaakov Amidror a former Israeli national security adviser, said "For many years it has been one of the Syrian centres for research and development for weapons systems including chemical weapons … and weapons that have been transferred to Hezbollah." The director of the Israeli national security council's counter-terrorism bureau called for the destruction of the centre in 2010, alleging it had provided weapons to Hezbollah and Hamas.[50]

On 22 September 2017, some sources reported that Israeli jets carried out three separate strikes on targets near the Damascus International Airport, which the SOHR reported to have struck Hezbollah weapons depots.[51]

On 16 October, Israeli aircraft destroyed a Syrian SA-5 anti-aircraft battery east of Damascus after it fired a missile at Israeli jets that were on a routine aerial reconnaissance flight in Lebanese airspace.[52] On morning 16 October 2017, according to the Israeli military, Israeli jets attacked a Ba'athist Syrian anti-aircraft missile launcher after it fired on Israeli aircraft flying in Lebanon's air space, close to the Syrian border, for reconnaissance mission; an Israeli military spokesman said it was the first time Israeli aircraft had been targeted by Syrian forces while flying over Lebanon since the Syrian war began.[53]

On 1 November 2017, Arab media claimed Israeli jets allegedly bombed a weapons depot situated in rural areas around Hisya, south of Homs. Several reports claimed that the Syrians launched a surface-to-air missile against Israeli aircraft but did not hit them.[54] Arab media also reported Israeli strikes and anti-aircraft missile launches from Iranian bases near al-Kiswahon 2 December 2017.[55][56]

On early morning 2 December 2017, a military site near Al-Kiswah south of Damascus was attacked by missiles reputedly from the Israeli military; two of the surface-to-surface missiles launched were intercepted by Syrian air defense, according to Syrian media reports.[5][57][58] The incident was three days after followed by a report by Syria that claimed that Syrian air defense units had shot down three Israeli missiles that were targeting a military post near Damascus; there was no Israeli comment on the incident.[59] Another attack was reported on 7 December.[60]


February 2018

On 7 February 2018, Syrian state media said that Israeli warplanes attacked a military position in the Damascus countryside from Lebanese airspace, with Syrian air defenses destroying most of the missiles. Other reports stated that the target was the Scientific Research Center in Jamraya, west of Damascus, and that the same position had been targeted by Israel twice before. Some activists claim that the position contains arms depots used by Hezbollah.[61]

Israel conducted further airstrikes in Syria in February 2018 which were believed to target weapon transfers to Hezbollah.[62] Subsequently, an Iranian-made drone was shot down over northern Israel and an IAF F-16 was shot down by Syrian anti-aircraft fire in retaliatory strikes.[63] Both aircrew ejected and landed safely before the plane crashed near the Harduf kibbutz and the IAF followed up with further strikes against targets Syrian air defenses and Iranian drone-control facilities.[64][65]

March 2018

On 17 March 2018, the Israeli Air Force struck a target in Syria. In response the Syrian Army fired several S-200 missiles at Israeli jets above Golan Heights. Israel reported that one Syrian missile had been shot down by an Arrow 2 missile, while none of its aircraft had been damaged.[44] Israel stated it was targeting weapon shipments headed toward anti-Israeli forces, specifically Hezbollah, in Lebanon, while the Syrian Army claimed that a military site near Palmyra had been struck.[44]

April 2018

Russia and Syria accused Israel of carrying out an airstrike on 9 April 2018, against Tiyas air base, also known as the T-4 air base, outside Palmyra in central Syria. The Russian defense ministry said the Israeli aircraft launched eight missiles at the base from Lebanese airspace, five of which were intercepted by Syrian air defense systems. According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitor, at least 14 people were killed and more were wounded.[66] Among the dead were seven Iranian soldiers.[67] On 16 April, an unnamed Israeli military official confirmed to the New York Times his country conducted the airstrikes.[68]

At least 26 pro-regime fighters were killed by missile strikes on 29 April in the Hama Province of central Syria. According to Iran's state media, 18 of them were Iranians.[69] The strikes also hit an airbase in the nearby Aleppo Province storing surface-to-surface missiles. "Given the nature of the target, it is likely to have been an Israeli strike", according to SOHR.[70]

May 2018

Arab media reported that on 6 May 2018 eight members of the Syrian Air Force's 150th Air Defense Division were killed in a mysterious explosion in the morning on the Damascus-Suwayda road. Engineers and soldiers from the battalion that was responsible for the operation of the anti-aircraft system S-200 and had carried out the downing of the Israeli F-16 two months prior, took a transport vehicle and suddenly the explosion took place. According to Syrian sources, eight were killed and Israel was blamed for assassinating them.[71]

According to Syrian media, on 8 May 2018, Israeli warplanes struck several military bases in Syria where there is significant Iranian presence. The Syrian government claimed that two Israeli missiles that were targeting a weapons convoy at a base were downed near the al-Kiswah industrial zones close to Damascus.[72]

On 10 May, Iranian elite forces on the Syrian-held side of the Golan Heights were accused by IDF of having fired around 20 projectiles towards Israeli army positions causing no damage or injuries.[73] Israel responded with the "most extended strike in Syria in decades".[74] According to Russia's Defense Ministry, this involved 28 planes and the fire of 70 missiles.[74] However, The Syrian Arab Army claimed responsibility for the attack on Israeli army positions.[75] And Fares Shehabi, member of the Syrian parliament for Aleppo, also confirmed that it was the Syrians and not the Iranians that struck Israeli targets in retaliation to Israeli bombardment of Syria.[76][77]

On 18 May, massive explosions hit the Hama Military Airport. Sky News Arabia reported that it was caused by targeted strikes against an Iranian Bavar 373 long-range missile defense system that was put into service in March 2017.[78] The Baghdad Post reported that Israeli jets targeted the IRGC positions at the airport and that the shelling came shortly after hitting positions of the Iraqi militias who gathered there.[79]

On 24 May, warplanes flying from Lebanese airspace conducted a strike near an airport in Homs, following earlier reports of Israeli aircraft being seen above Lebanon.[80][81][82] According to the Syrian Al-Marsad organization for human rights, the attack was aimed at a Hezbollah base.[83] Twenty one people were reportedly killed in the strike, including nine Iranians.[84]

June 2018

According to Kuwaiti newspaper Al-Jarida, Israel struck Iraqi Shiite militants in Syria with the approval of both Russia and the United States on 18 June 2018, killing 52.[85] Syrian official news agency SANA reported that two Israeli missiles struck near Damascus International Airport on 26 June.[86] Local activists claimed that Israeli warplanes targeted an Iranian cargo plane that was being unloaded at the airport.[87] UK-Based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that the Israeli missiles hit arms depots for Hezbollah near the airport and Syrian air defense systems failed to prevent the Israeli strikes.[88]

July 2018

According to the Syrian opposition, an Israeli airstrike destroyed ammunition warehouses belonging to the Assad regime and pro-Assad militias in the Deraa district of southern Syria on 3 July.[89]

Syrian State TV reported on 8 July that Israeli aircraft targeted the T-4 air base near Homs, and Syrian air defense systems shot down a number of incoming missiles. While Syrian state media did not report any casualties, the Syrian opposition stated nine people were killed in the strikes. Citing Arab media sources, Al Jazeera claimed between four and six rockets hit the base and its surroundings.[90]

On 11 July 2018, after an Israeli Patriot missile intercepted a Syrian reconnaissance drone which infiltrated into northern Israel, Israel attacked three Syrian military posts in the Quneitra area.[91]

Syrian media reported that on 15 July Israel attacked the Nayrab military airport outside Aleppo. In the past Al-Nayrab has been linked to Iranian forces.[92] On 22 July, Syrian state television reported that an Israeli airstrike hit a military site in the city of Misyaf in the Hama province, causing only material damage. An intelligence source assessed that a military research center for chemical arms production was located near the city.[93]

On 22 July 2018, SANA claimed that a facility at Masyaf had been struck. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights confirmed that an attack had targeted the location and claimed that it was being used for the assembly of surface-to-surface missiles, under the supervision of Iranian forces. it further claimed that Iranian and Hizbollah units were present in the vicinity. The facility struck is reported to have been under the control of the Scientific Studies And Research Center which has been suspected of being responsible for the production of chemical weapons. The site was allegedly previously struck in September 2017.[94]

On 24 July, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) intercepted a Syrian Sukhoi fighter jet that they said had crossed about one mile into Israeli airspace. The IDF shot the aircraft down using two Patriot missiles.[95]

September 2018

Large explosions were reported at a Syrian military air base near Damascus on 2 September 2018 in a strike attributed by some to Israeli warplanes. However, Syria denied an attack had taken place, saying the blasts were caused by an explosion at an ammunitions dump provoked by electrical malfunctions.[96] Israel didn't issue any statement in regard to the incident.

Syrian state media reported that Israeli aircraft attacked Iranian positions in the city of Hama on 4 September 2018, killing at least one person and injuring twelve others. According to a military source, Syrian air defenses intercepted several missiles over the nearby town of Wadi al-Uyun. Additional strikes were reported in Baniyas as well.[97] Israel revealed that its forces have carried out more than 200 airstrikes against Iranian targets in Syria and fired over 800 missiles and mortar shells over the past year and a half, causing an interruption of Iran's arms smuggling and the evacuation of several Iranian bases in Syria.[98] Israel allegedly targeted Damascus airport on 15 September, destroying a weapons depot with newly-arrived arms for Hezbollah or the Iranian military. Syrian state media claimed Israeli missiles were intercepted.[99]

On 17 September, the Israeli Air Force conducted missile strikes on a weapons facility near Latakia. The IDF acknowledged the airstrikes the following day.[100] SANA news agency reported ten people had been injured.[101] According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, 113 Iranian soldiers were killed during the past month as a result of Israeli strikes in Syria.[102] During or within 40 minutes after the strikes, an Il-20 ELINT reconnaissance plane, with 15 Russian servicemen on board, which was coming in to land at the Russian Khmeimim Air Base, was shot down in a friendly fire incident by Syrian air defense systems that sought to target the Israeli aircraft.[103][104][105] Russia's defence minister Sergey Shoygu blamed Israel's military for the accident because, according to the ministry, the Russian military had only received one minute's warning from Israel about the impending missile strikes and the four Israeli F-16 jets that conducted the strikes deliberately used the Russian plane as cover to allow them to approach their targets on the ground without being hit by Syrian fire.[103][106] On 20 September in Moscow an Israeli delegation led by commander of the Israeli Air Force Amikam Norkin presented to Russia Air Force command Israel's inquiry on the bombing of an Iranian-Hezbollah advanced weapons transfer site and the related loss of the IL-20. The IDF stated that their planes were already landing in Israel when Syrian antiaircraft missiles shot down the Russian IL-20.[107][108]

November 2018

Israeli missiles reportedly targeted sites belonging to Iranian-backed militias in al-Kiswah on 29 November 2018. Fragments of a Syrian anti-aircraft missile were found in an open area in Israel's side of the Golan Heights several hours after Syrian media said it had downed "hostile targets" over the southern part of the country the previous night. Israeli military sources denied any plane was shot down.[109]

December 2018

Alleged Israeli airstrike in Damascus, targeting Hezbollah and weaponry.[110] Israeli air defenses, probably Arrow missile were fired from Hadera towards a Syrian surface to air missile.[111]


January 2019

The IDF stated that it bombed 202 Iranian targets from January 2017 to September 2018 alone, using over 800 bombs and missiles, an average of one strike every three days. The 202 targets were mostly shipments of advanced weaponry, as well as military bases and infrastructure used by the IRGC and their proxy militias, which the IDF officials said drove Iranian forces to abandon some posts.[6]

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported that on 12 January 2019, Israeli aircraft attacked missile depots belonging to Hezbollah in the al-Kiswah area and Damascus International Airport. Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu said "Only in the last 36 hours did the air force strike targets in Syria and we have proven that we will stop the settlement of Iran in Syria."[112] The strikes destroyed a building and radar site at the airport as well as a radar site in the Suwayda countryside, and damaged a suspected Iranian target in a Syrian military base next to Jamraya.[113]

Local Syrian media and Syrian opposition sources reported that on 20 January 2019, Israeli missiles were fired at Damascus International Airport and the town of al-Kiswah. The Syrian military claimed nine missiles were intercepted by its air defenses. IDF reported that the Iron Dome system intercepted an incoming projectile from Syria, which was heading toward the northern Golan Heights.[114] Israel retaliated by attacking Iranian targets near Damascus and Syrian air defense batteries that fired upon the attacking Israeli jets.[115] The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said 21 people died in the strikes, including 12 Iranian fighters.[116] On 23 January, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said Israel must stop its "arbitrary" air incursions into Syria. Syria's envoy to the UN Bashar Jaafari raised the prospected of retaliatory Syrian attacks on Tel Aviv airport.[117]

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported that on 12 January 2019, Israeli aircraft attacked missile depots belonging to Hezbollah in the al-Kiwash area and the Damascus international airport. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said "Only in the last 36 hours did the air force strike targets in Syria and we have proven that we will stop the settlement of Iran in Syria."[112]

March 2019

On 27 March, an Israeli airstrike northeast of Aleppo on a weapons depot killed one Iranian and six Iraqi fighters.[118]

April 2019

On 13 April, Syria says Israel launched airstrikes at a military academy near Masyaf known as the "Accounting School", along with targeting a missile development center in a village near Masyaf, and a nearby military base run by Iran-backed fighters. The strikes injured at least 6 soldiers. The SOHR reports that 17 were wounded and deaths occurred, but no number was given.[119]

May 2019

On 27 May, an Israeli aircraft destroyed a Syrian anti-aircraft battery, killing 2 soldiers (one of whom was an officer).[120]

June 2019

On 3 June, Syrian state media reported that Israel attacked the Tiyas Military Airbase near the northern city of Homs, killing 1 to 5 soldiers.[121] Independent satellite imagery analysis showed that the strikes were aimed at a specific recently arrived weapons cache from Iran, possibly UAVs.[122]

July 2019

On 1 July, Israel performed strikes on multiple Iranian and Syrian military targets outside Damascus and Homs, killing 16 people (including 9 foreign militiamen) and wounding 21.[123] A stray Syrian S-200 missile fired in response to the Israeli strikes crashed and exploded on a mountain near Vouno in Northern Cyprus, located 20 km (12 miles) northeast of Nicosia, causing no injuries but starting a fire.[124]

On 23 July, Israel launched missile strikes on military positions and intelligence facilities belonging to Iran and Iran-controlled militias, killing 6 Iranian soldiers and 3 militiamen.[125]

August 2019

On 24 August, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) conducted strikes on targets near Damascus, citing a successful attempt to obstruct an Iranian drone attack on Israel.[126]

September 2019

On 9 September, Israeli aircraft struck an arms depot belonging to a pro-Iranian Iraqi militia, killing 21 militiamen and demolishing the facility.[127]

On 17 September, Israeli aircraft struck another weapons depot belonging to pro-Iranian Iraqi militiamen, killing another 10 fighters.[128]

November 2019

On 12 November, Israel unsuccessfully attempted to kill Akram al-Ajouri, a senior commander of the Iran-backed Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ). However, the airstrike killed his son and bodyguard.[129]

On 19 November, after four missiles were fired and intercepted at Israeli-controlled Golan, Israeli aircraft attacked Syrian and Iranian targets in Syria, including advanced air defense systems, surface-to-air missiles, reconnaissance sites and warehouses, the National Defense Building at the Damascus International Airport which houses the Quds Force headquarters and other military positions. According to the British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), 23 people were killed, including sixteen foreigners (most likely Iranians).[130]


January 2020

9–10 January, unidentified planes, probably belonging to Israel, killed eight fighters from pro-Iranian Iraqi militia, the Imam Ali Brigades, by targeting their arms depots along with other trucks carrying a weapons shipment to Lebanese Hezbollah, in the vicinity of Al-Bukamal and Al-Qitaa.[131][132]

February 2020

On 6 February, Israeli warplanes fire missiles near Damascus, Syria. A pro-opposition war monitor said army positions and Iran-backed militias were targeted, killing 15 fighters, including five Syrians and at least three Iranians. Syria said eight fighters were wounded and Israel intended to "save the armed terrorist organisations which have been collapsing in Idlib and western Aleppo Governorate in front of the strikes of the Syrian Army", in reference to the Operation Idlib.[133]

On 13 February, Israeli missiles targeted Iranian warehouses between the Damascus International Airport and the Sayyidah Zaynab neighborhood.[134][135] Israeli strikes on Damascus airport killed seven fighters. Rami Abdel Rahman, the director of the Britain-based Observatory, said the dead were three Syrian soldiers and four members of Iran's Revolutionary Guard.[136]

On 24 February, Israeli warplanes killed six people near the Damascus International Airport including Iran-backed fighters and two members of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad.[137] On 27 February, Israeli warplanes killed a Syrian policeman in the Quneitra Governorate,[138] as he was initially thought to be related to Hezbollah.[139]

March 2020

On 5 March, Israeli raids targeted Al-Qusayr and Shayrat Military Airbases, the headquarters of Hezbollah near Homs refinery,[140][141] and Tulul al-Humur in Quneitra Governorate.[142] The raids resulted in killing one Syrian soldier and injuring others.[142]

On 7 March, an IRGC commander, Farhad Dabirian, was reported to be killed a day earlier in the Sayyidah Zaynab neighborhood in Damascus, without giving details on the circumstances of his death. Dabirian was responsible for operations against the Islamic State in Palmyra.[143]

On 11 March, three warplanes targeted al-Hassian area near the Syrian town of Al-Bukamal, which resulted in killing 26 of the Iraqi Popular Mobilization. However, the US-led coalition denied carrying out those airstrikes in Syria.[144]

On 31 March, Syrian media claimed that Israeli planes targeted Shayrat Airbase with at least eight missiles from Lebanon's airspace.[145]

April 2020

On 18 April, 2 Israeli airstrikes targeted a Hezbollah commander Mustafa Mughniyeh in Jdeideh Yabous, near the Syrian-Lebanese border. No one was hurt in the incident.[146][147]

On 20 April, Syrian authorities stated that they intercepted Israeli airstrikes,[148] fired from Lebanese airspace,[149] which killed 9 Iran-backed fighters in Palmyra.[150]

On 27 April, Israeli airstrikes fired from Lebanese airspace targeting Iranian forces in al-Hujaira and al-Adliya, south of Damascus, killed 4 militants and 3 civilians. The Syrian military claimed to have shot down most of the missiles.[151][152]

On 30 April, Israeli helicopters fired five rockets from the Golan Heights over the southern Syrian border,[153][154] at Tall al Ahmar al Gharbi in the Quneitra region, and also near Maaraba, Daraa.[155]

May 2020

On 5 May, 14 Iranian and Iraqi militiamen were killed due to Israeli airstrikes on positions of Iranian forces and Iranian-backed militias in the deserts of Al-Quriyah, Al-Salihiyah and Al-Mayadin in the eastern countryside of Deir Ezzor after attacking weapons and ammunition depots in As-Safira area, south-east of Aleppo.[156] On 15 May, an Iranian commander, Abu al-Fadl Sarlak, was announced to be killed in Khanasir, probably from the Israeli airstrikes near Aleppo.[157]

On 16 May, SOHR reported that 7 Iranian-backed militias were killed by unidentified warplanes targeting their military base in Mueayzila near Al Bukamal.[158]

June 2020

On 4 June, Israeli warplanes targeted defense factories belonging to the IRGC near Masyaf, in which 9 militants were killed, according to SOHR.[159][160]

On 6 June, eight airstrikes by unidentified aircraft targeted a base of pro-Iranian forces in rural Deir Ezzor, killing 12 Iraqi and Afghan fighters and destroying their equipment and ammunition, according to SOHR.[161]

On 24 June after midnight, Israeli airstrikes targeted ammunition depots in Sabburah, Salamiyah, Aqarib and Ithriya in Hama Governorate,[162] in addition to airstrikes at Kabbajb in Deir Ezzor Governorate, Al-Sukhna in Homs Governorate, and military facilities at Tel el-Sahn and Salkhad in Al-Suwayda Governorate. The airstrikes killed at least seven soldiers and injured several others.[163][164]

On 27 June, unidentified warplanes killed at least six pro-Iranian militants including four Syrians, when they targeted their sites near Al-Abbas, Deir Ezzor Governorate, according to SOHR.[165] The airstrikes came hours after Iranian Quds Force commander Esmail Ghaani visited his forces in Al-Bukamal.[166]

July 2020

On 11 July, at least 35 Iran-backed fighters were killed, including IRGC officer Ibrahim Asmi,[167] by unidentified warplanes in Deir Ezzor Governorate near the Iraqi borders, according to the Anadolu Agency.[168]

On 20 July, military sites linked to Syrian regime forces and Iranian militias were targeted by alleged Israeli airstrikes near Damascus. Syrian air defenses also responded to Israeli missiles in As-Suwayda, Izraa and Quneitra in southern Syria.[169][170] According to a monitoring group based in Britain, five Iran-backed fighters were killed in the strikes,[171] including Hezbollah member Ali Kamel Mohsen from south Lebanon, who was killed near Damascus airport.[172] By 26 July the death toll increased to eight pro-Iranian militants of non-Syrian nationalities.[173]

August 2020

On 3 August, after four attackers were killed by Israeli forces while laying improvised explosives at the border fence in southern Golan the previous day, Israeli aircraft and helicopters struck targets in Syria, including lookout points, intelligence gathering mechanisms, anti-aircraft weapons and means of control and command at military bases.[174] Israeli airstrikes struck positions of Iranian forces and Iranian-backed militias in Imam Ali military base between 5:00 am and 9:00 am killing 15 fighters and destroying military positions, bases and weapons warehouses.[175]

On 31 August, eleven people were killed in Israeli missile strikes in southern Syria, including three Syrian soldiers, seven pro-Iranian fighters and a civilian.[176]

September 2020

On 3 September, 16 Iran-backed fighters were killed by suspected Israeli airstrikes. Those killed were "Iraqi paramilitary fighters loyal to Iran, seven of whom were killed outside the city of Mayadeen," Rami Abdul Rahman, head of the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, said. The other nine were killed in strikes south of the city of Abu Kamal, on the Iraqi border further east.[177]

On 11 September, Syrian media announced that air defenses thwarted an Israeli attack against the missile compound in Al-Safirah,[178] outside of Aleppo, which left seven militants from the Iraqi Hezbollah dead, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.[179]

On 14 September, at least 10 pro-Iranian militiamen were killed in airstrikes believed to have been conducted by Israel in eastern Syria, a monitor reported.[180]

October 2020

On 21 October, Three Iranian-backed paramilitary fighters were killed in an overnight Israeli strike that hit Syria's southern province of Quneitra, a war monitor said. The three were from the Syrian Resistance to Liberate the Golan, a group linked to the Lebanese Hezbollah movement, said Rami Abdul Rahman, head of the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.[181]

November 2020

On 15 November, six Iranian proxy militants were killed in an unidentified missile strike against the Iraq-Syria border city of Al Bukamal. It was not known whether Israeli fighter jets or the US-led international coalition had staged the raid.[182]

On 18 November, 10 people were killed during an Israeli airstrike in Syria overnight, including Iranian nationals. The casualties included: three Syrian officers and members of air-defence forces, five militiamen of "Al-Quds Corps" believed to of Iranian nationality, and two other militiamen, but it is not known yet if they were Lebanese or Iraqis.[183][184] However, Israelis claimed that the airstrikes which targeted air defence positions near Damascus airport and ammunition depots near Sayyida Zainab and al-Kiswah, came after they found three Claymore anti-personnel charges in the Golan Heights.[185]

On 22 November, 14 pro-Iranian militiamen of Afghan and Iraqi nationalities were killed during the shelling by aircraft, believed to be Israeli, in Al-Bukamal countryside, which targeted positions affiliated with these militias in that area. Two positions and vehicles were also destroyed in the attack.[186]

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights HAS documented the killing of eight militiamen of pro-Iranian militias and Lebanese Hezbollah of non-Syrian nationalities, as a result of Israeli shelling on Jabal al-Mani in southern Damascus countryside just before midnight.[187]

On 26 November, airstrikes likely carried out by Israel killed at least 19 pro-Iran militia fighters in war-torn eastern Syria, a war monitor said Thursday.[188][189][190][191]

According to unnamed Iraqi sources on 28 or 29 November, an airstrike allegedly killed an IRGC commander along with three other people when their vehicle was carrying weapons across the Iraqi-Syrian border.[192] Iran however denied these reports. "We have not received any report in this regard, and it seems more like media propaganda," Saeed Khatibzadeh, the spokesman for Iran's Foreign Ministry, said, according to Iran’s semi-official Mehr news agency.[193]

December 2020

On 25 December, Israeli warplanes targeted pro-Iran weapons facilities in the Masyaf area, after they had flown very low over parts of Lebanon.[194] Israeli airstrikes in Syria overnight killed at least six fighters operating in pro-Iran militias on the western province of Hama, a war monitoring group said Friday.[195]

On 30 December, one Syrian soldier has been killed and several others wounded in an Israeli attack on a military position in the Damascus countryside near the Zabadani Valley, state news agency SANA says, citing a military source.[196]



On 7 January, Israeli airstrikes targeted pro-Iranian forces weapons depots in al-Kiswa area, in addition to the radar system battalion to the west of Al-Dour village in Suwayda Governorate.[197] The strikes killed three Iran-backed fighters.[198]

On 12–13 January, at least 10 airstrikes hit the mountains around Deir ez-Zor city killing 26 people, 14 Syrian soldiers and 12 Iranian-backed militiamen. Six airstrikes hit weapons warehouses and ammunition depots in Al-Bokamal desert killing 16 Iraqi militiamen. Two airstrikes targeted warehouses in Al-Mayadeen desert killing 15 foreign militia men. In total 18 airstrikes across Deir ez-Zor Governorate killed 57 in what was the highest death toll ever since Israel started its attacks on Syria.[199][200]

On 22 January, Israel carried out an airstrike near the city of Hama, killing a family of four, including two children.[201]


On 3 February, Israeli Air Force launched an attack on Hezbollah positions in Quneitra Governorate,[202] and other sites near Damascus International Airport.[203]

On 11 February, unidentified drones targeted a weapons shipment at an illegal military crossing, near Al-Bukamal in the eastern Deir Ezzor Governorate.[204]

On 15 February, Israeli airstrikes struck positions and warehouses, west and south-west of the capital Damascus, in the area of Damascus International Airport as well as Al-Kiswah and the headquarters of the Syrian Army's 4th Armoured Division.[205][206] Nine pro-Iranian militiamen were killed in the airstrikes. The dead were all of non-Syrian and non-Arab nationalities, and it is not known whether they were Afghans, Pakistanis or Iranians, as these militias are substantially deployed in the area near the Lebanese border.[207]

On 28 February, Iran-related sites were targeted around Damascus in what Hebrew media outlets suggest was a response to an Iranian attack against an Israeli-owned vessel in the Gulf of Oman the previous week.[208]


On 11 March, The Wall Street Journal reported that Israel had used weaponry including naval mines to target a dozen of Iranian ships carrying oil or weapons to Syria in the past two years.[209]

On 16 March, a Syrian military source claimed that Israel attacked Iranian weapon shipments near Damascus.[210]


On April 22, Syria fired an SA-5 surface-to-air missile in response to what it claims was an Israeli airstrike near Damascus. The missile reportedly landed close to Israel's nuclear reactor in Dimona, after Israel failed to intercept the missile. Israel retaliated by attacking a number of Syrian missile launchers, including the one that fired the projectile.[211]


On May 4, Israeli aircraft hit targets in northern Syria, killing one and wounding six.[212]

On May 5, Israeli forces attacked Hezbollah outposts near Quneitra on the Syrian border with Israel.[213]

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