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Israel 'thwarts IS attack' on Golan Heights

Israel 'thwarts IS attack' on Golan Heights

Iranian forces have withdrawn their heavy weapons in Syria to a distance of 85 km from the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, the state-run TASS news agency quoted a Russian envoy as saying on Wednesday, but Israel deemed the pullback inadequate.

The BBC's Middle East correspondent, Tom Bateman, who is in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights, says that despite the infiltration, Israel sees Iranian forces loyal to President Assad as the biggest threat from inside Syria.

IDF troops found assault rifles, explosives belts and grenades as well as the seven terrorists' remains.

The Russian forces operating in Syria have warned that ISIS is trying to draw Israel into the country's long and bloody civil war.

He added that "conditions have been created for the resumption of the activities of United Nations peacekeeping forces in the Golan Heights".

"They were in battle formation and it's our assessment they were on their way to carry out an attack on Israeli targets", said Lieutenant-Colonel Jonathan Conricos, an IDF spokesman.

"Overnight, an IDF aircraft fired towards several armed terror operatives in the southern Syrian Golan Heights". The peacekeeping mission was halted in 2014 amid the violence in Syrian's civil war over security concerns.

'The United States is not trustworthy': Iran rejects meeting with Trump
Speaking at a White House news conference on Monday, Trump said , "I would certainly meet with Iran if they wanted to meet". Iran's foreign ministry spokesman on Tuesday said Trump's offer to negotiate with Tehran contradicts his actions.

Israeli forces monitored the militants' movements before carrying out the strike, he said.

An Israeli air strike has killed seven militants believed to be linked to the Islamic State group and seeking to infiltrate the country from the Syrian Golan Heights, the army said Thursday.

"As the situation stabilizes, these posts will be handed over to Syrian government forces", Rudskoy told reporters.

Israel has called for Iranian-backed forces to withdraw from Syria, appealing to Russian Federation to enforce their exit. The army's announcement came shortly after Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman toured a Patriot missile defence battery in northern Israel during a military preparedness drill.

Separately, the Jordan military said it had clashed with encroaching Khaled Bin Walid Army fighters for 24 hours between Tuesday and Wednesday, killing an unspecified number of them.

Jordan has been in discussion with Russian authorities, Safadi said, and will respond to Syria's request "positively", in a way that supports Jordanian and Syrian interests.


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