BEIRUT

Middle East

Israel says Assad forces behind Golan attack that killed boy

Mourners carry the coffin of Mohammed Qaraqara during his funeral in the northern town of Arabeh June 23, 2014.(REUTERS/Baz Ratner)

OCCUPIED JERUSALEM: Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said Tuesday that Syrian forces launched an attack that killed an Israeli boy on the occupied Golan Heights and Damascus would have to "pay the price" for it.

An anti-tank missile fired from Syria across the frontier fence Sunday killed Mohammed Qaraqara, 13, drawing Israeli tank fire and air strikes on Syrian army positions.

"We got all the analysis, all the intelligence and it was clear it was Syrian authorities, Assad's forces, who fired on the Israeli boy," Liberman said, referring to Syrian President Bashar Assad.

"They must pay the price," he told Israel Radio. "I hope Damascus got the message."

It was the first time an Israeli official has laid blame for the attack, which Israel had earlier described as intentional and the most serious on the frontier since the start of the 3-year-old Syrian conflict.

The Syrian army has a presence on the Golan Heights but many areas are controlled by rebels, including militant groups hostile to the Jewish state.

There were conflicting accounts on the number of Syrians killed in the Israeli retaliatory air strikes late Sunday.

The Syrian Foreign Ministry said four people were killed and nine wounded, according to state news agency SANA, and called on the U.N. Security Council to condemn the attacks.

An Israeli military source told Reuters Monday that three Syrians were killed and 10 wounded. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a monitoring group that collects information from activists in Syria, said "at least 10 members of the Syrian army were killed."

"I think Israel responded exactly as we should have, in this case and all others. We cannot just gloss over an Israeli citizen, a boy, being murdered in cold blood with no one being held responsible," Lieberman said.

The Syrian conflict has spilled over into bordering countries and escalated regional tensions. Shelling from Syria has occasionally hit the Golan, including what Israel has said were deliberate attacks on its troops.

Israel captured the western part of the plateau from Syria in a 1967 war and annexed it in a move that is not recognized internationally.

 

Recommended

Advertisement

Comments

Your feedback is important to us!

We invite all our readers to share with us their views and comments about this article.

Disclaimer: Comments submitted by third parties on this site are the sole responsibility of the individual(s) whose content is submitted. The Daily Star accepts no responsibility for the content of comment(s), including, without limitation, any error, omission or inaccuracy therein. Please note that your email address will NOT appear on the site.

Alert: If you are facing problems with posting comments, please note that you must verify your email with Disqus prior to posting a comment. follow this link to make sure your account meets the requirements. (http://bit.ly/vDisqus)

comments powered by Disqus
Summary

Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said Tuesday that Syrian forces launched an attack that killed an Israeli boy on the occupied Golan Heights and Damascus would have to "pay the price" for it.

An anti-tank missile fired from Syria across the frontier fence Sunday killed Mohammed Qaraqara, 13, drawing Israeli tank fire and air strikes on Syrian army positions.

It was the first time an Israeli official has laid blame for the attack, which Israel had earlier described as intentional and the most serious on the frontier since the start of the 3-year-old Syrian conflict.

Shelling from Syria has occasionally hit the Golan, including what Israel has said were deliberate attacks on its troops.


Advertisement

FOLLOW THIS ARTICLE

Interested in knowing more about this story?

Click here