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Report: Israeli airstrike hit Syrian missile warehouse

JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israel was responsible for an attack earlier this month on a missile warehouse in Syria, unnamed U.S. officials said.

A New York Times report on Saturday cited the officials in saying that Israel carried out the July 5 air attack near Latakia, a major Syrian port city, targeting advanced anti-ship cruise missiles sold to the Syria government by Russia.

Israeli officials and Pentagon officials declined to comment to The New York Times on the report. Syrian rebels have said they were not behind the Latakia attack.

It would be the fourth Israeli airstrike against weapons targets in Syria in recent months.

Israel has said it will not get involved in Syria’s two-year civil war, but has indicated that it will attack weapons stockpiles in order to prevent them from falling into the hands of Hezbollah, a terrorist group.

Israel in January reportedly struck a weapons convoy in Syria carrying Russian-made missiles en route to Hezbollah. In May, Israel reportedly twice struck Syrian missile stockpiles.

Israel has neither confirmed nor denied the attacks, though U.S. officials have identified Israel as the attacker in all three incidents.

Russia said last month it would honor its commitment to deliver the advanced air defense missile system to Syria, despite objections from the United States, Israel and other Western nations.

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