Israeli airstrike puts Syrian airport out of commission
BEIRUT (AP) — Israel launched a missile attack on Tuesday targeting Syria’s Aleppo airport for the second time in a week, this time putting it out of commission, Syrian state media said.
The Syrian government did not report any casualties. The transport ministry said all flights will be diverted to the capital, Damascus.
State media, citing a military source, reported that Syrian anti-missile defense systems fired back at what they said were Israeli missiles.
According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a U.K.-based opposition war monitor, the airstrikes also destroyed warehouses belonging to Iran-backed militias.
The private airliner Cham Wings said in a statement that it is diverting all its flights from Aleppo to the international airport of Damascus. It added that passengers will be shuttled by buses for free between the two cities.
Israel launched airstrikes at Aleppo airport last week, damaging its runway and, according to the war monitor, a warehouse that likely stored a shipment of Iranian rockets.
Last week’s strike tore a hole in the runway and also damaged a structure close to the military side of the airfield, satellite photos analyzed by The Associated Press showed.
Syria’s foreign minister last week said the attack “completely destroyed the navigation station with its equipment.”
On June 10, Israeli airstrikes that struck Damascus International Airport caused significant damage to infrastructure and runways and rendered the main runway unserviceable. The airport opened two weeks later following renovation work.
Israel has carried out hundreds of strikes on targets inside government-controlled parts of Syria in recent years, but rarely acknowledges or discusses such operations.
Israel has acknowledged, however, that it targets bases of Iran-allied militant groups, such as Lebanon’s Hezbollah, which has sent thousands of fighters to support Syrian President Bashar Assad’s forces.
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