Israel targets IRGC sites in Syria’s Deir ez-Zor – Israeli paper

QAMISHLI, Syria (North Press) – Israel launched airstrikes on Iranian-linked sites and individuals in Deir ez-Zor Governorate, eastern Syria, an Israeli newspaper reported on Wednesday.

The Times of Israel said the Israeli forces targeted on Tuesday at dawn sites linked to Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) “involved in attempts to smuggle advanced arms to West Bank terrorists,” adding a Quds Force officer was among the casualties.

Informed security sources, meanwhile, told North Press that the airstrikes targeted several IRGC headquarters in the city of Deir ez-Zor and its countryside, killing of 13 military personnel and injuring over 20 others.

The newspaper reported that according to Israeli defense sources, the airstrikes targeted assets affiliated with Iran’s Unit 4000, the Special Operations Division of IRGC’s Intelligence Organization, and the special operations unit Quds Force in Syria, known as Unit 18840.

The sources added the strikes were in response to attempts of smuggling advanced arms into the West Bank.

Moreover, Iran’s state news agency IRNA reported that the dead the Quds Force officer was identified as Behrouz Vahedi.

Additionally, the World Health Organization (WHO) said Emad Shehab, a staff member was also killed in the airstrikes in Deir ez-Zor. The organization added that Shehab, an engineer, worked as WHO’s focal point for water, sanitation and hygiene in the city since 2022.

Syria’s state-run news agency SANA claimed the airstrikes were carried out by the United States, saying the strikes killed seven Syrian soldiers and one civilian. However, the U.S. denied the allegations as Sabrina Singh, Pentagon spokesperson, told reporters in Washington on Tuesday, “We did not carry out air strikes in Syria.”

Since the Israel-Hamas broke out in October 2023, Israel has increasingly targeted Iranian-backed sites and individuals in Syria, in addition to some Syrian air defenses and forces.

By Stella Youssef