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2 Israeli Soldiers, 2 UN Observers Wounded on Syrian Front As Fiercest Fighting Erupts Since Oct. Wa

March 20, 1974
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date

Two Israeli soldiers and two United Nations observers were wounded today as the Syrian front erupted anew in one of the fiercest artillery and tank-gun battles since the Yom Kippur War. The casualties occurred at 9 a.m. local time on the central section of the front. The UN truce observers were attempting to end the shooting which the Syrians had begun at 6:30 a.m. and to which Israeli forces replied. Both sides employed heavy and medium artillery, mortars and tank cannon. The firing subsided at 10:30 a.m. but was resumed by the Syrians at 11:20 and at last reports was continuing.

(A report from Damascus this morning said the Syrian capital was awakened by the sound of artillery fire. Two UN observers and a Syrian liaison officer were reported wounded on the Syrian side of the line.)

Syrian gunners shelled Israeli positions on the northern section of the line initially but soon extended their fire to the central section, the Rafid junction and the Druze village area within the enclave captured by Israel in the Yom Kippur War. The shooting kept Israeli settlers on the Golan Heights in their bomb shelters all morning. Golan Heights roads were again closed to civilian traffic this morning.

An Israeli military spokesman said direct hits were scored on Syrian tanks and armored vehicles and that the Syrians were seen evacuating casualties from the front lines Israeli casualties in the past two days of fighting were two soldiers dead and five wounded. The fatalities occurred yesterday.

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