July 2013 Latakia explosion

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July 2013 Latakia airstrike
Part of Israel–Iran proxy conflict and Syrian civil war
Operational scope Strategic
Objective Destroy a weapons cache containing anti-ship missiles
Date July 5, 2013 (2013-07-05)
Executed by
Outcome Unknown

The July 2013 Latakia explosion took place near Latakia, Syria, on July 5, 2013, the alleged result of an Israeli Defense Forces strike against targets believed to contain Yakhont anti-ship cruise missiles supplied to the Syrian government of Bashar Al-Assad by Russia,[1] or a result of mortar fire exchanges in the area.[2]


The Yakhont is of concern to Israel and its allies as it enhances Syria’s ability to strike Israel’s naval forces or could be provided to Hezbollah, which is currently fighting on the side of the government in the Syrian civil war. The missile can also strike ships that could be used to transport supplies to the Syrian opposition, enforce a shipping embargo or support a no-flight zone.[3]


CNN reported that the strike was carried out by the Israeli Air Force, while the Sunday Times reported that the explosions were the result of a cruise missile fired from a Dolphin-class submarine.[4] The blasts occurred at a military complex in the town of Samiyah, near Latakia.[5] The FSA speculated that "enemy aircraft" were responsible while Hezbollah's Al-Manar claimed that the explosions were caused by "stray mortars" from "local clashes."[2]

On 13 July, United States officials said that Israel carried out an air attack that targeted advanced anti-ship cruise missiles sold to the Syrian government by Russia. Their conclusion was based on intelligence reports.[6]

Subsequent raids[edit]

Israel is believed to have carried out another raid on October 30, 2013. The attack happened at an air defense site in Snawbar, 10 miles south of Latakia. An explosion, reportedly caused by a missile fired from over the sea, was reported by residents on social media; later, American officials confirmed Israel was behind the strike.[7]

Syrian opposition sources, as well as Lebanese sources, reported that another strike happened in Latakia on January 26, 2014. Explosions were reported in the city and Israeli planes were reported over Lebanon. The target was allegedly S-300 missiles.[8]

It was reported that Israeli aircraft carried out two airstrikes against Hezbollah facilities in Lebanon near the border with Syria on February 24, 2014, killing several militants. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights claimed the attack targeted a Hezbollah missile base.[9]

Israeli jets allegedly bombed areas near Damascus international airport and in the town of Dimas on December 7, 2014, near the border with Lebanon. According to foreign reports the attack targeted a warehouse of advanced S-300 missiles, which were en route from Syria to Hezbollah in Lebanon.[10] Al Arabiya reported that two Hezbollah militants were killed in the strikes, including a senior military official.[11]

Israeli helicopters attacked a Hezbollah's convoy in the Syrian-controlled part of Golan Heights on 18 January, 2015, killing six prominent members of Hezbollah and six IRGC commanders, including a General.[12][13]

On 25 April 2015, a series of attacks attributed to the Israeli Air Force were made in the al-Qalamoun region of Syria against Hezbollah camps and weapons convoys in two brigade bases.[14]

On 29 July 2015, Israeli airplanes reportedly struck a vehicle located in a Druse village in southwestern Syria, killing Hezbollah men and a pro-Assad militiaman.[15] A second airstrike targeted a military base along the Syrian-Lebanese border belonging to a pro-Syrian Palestinian faction.[16] It was reported that Samir Kuntar was among those killed.[17]

On 20 and 21 August 2015, after four rockets hit the Golan Heights and Upper Galilee, Israel launched airstrikes in Syria, killing several militants.[18]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Israel targeted Russian-made missiles in Syria, US officials say". The Guardian. 14 July 2013.
  2. ^ a b Kais, Roi (6 July 2013). "Mysterious explosion hits Assad munitions cache in Latakia". Ynetnews. Retrieved 7 March 2014. 
  3. ^ "Israel airstrike targeted advanced missiles that Russia sold to Syria, U.S. says". The New York Times. 13 July 2013.
  4. ^ "Israeli submarine strike hit Syrian arms depot". The Jerusalem Post. 14 July 2013.
  5. ^ "The explosions in Latakia: Before and after". Israel Defense. 13 July 2013.
  6. ^ "Israel Airstrike Targeted Advanced Missiles That Russia Sold to Syria, U.S. Says", New York Times. 14 July 2013
  7. ^ Israel blamed for airstrikes at Syrian missile base". Christian Science Monitor. 31 October 2013.
  8. ^ Israeli planes said to hit missile site in Syria The Times of Israel. 27 January 2014
  9. ^ Report: Hezbollah militants killed in Israeli strike Yedioth Ahronoth. 24 February 2014
  10. ^ "Syria: Israeli warplanes strike targets near Damascus". The Jerusalem Post. 7 December 2014. 
  11. ^ "Report: Two Hezbollah operatives killed in Sunday's alleged IAF strikes in Syria". The Jerusalem Post. 8 December 2014. 
  12. ^ "Region on edge after Israel's deadly strike". Daily Star. 2015-01-19. 
  13. ^ "Report: Six Iranians killed in Israeli strike in Syria, including Revolutionary Guards general". Jerusalem Post. 2015-01-19. 
  14. ^ "Israel reportedly hits Hezbollah, Assad targets in Syria". The Times of Israel. 
  15. ^ "Report: IAF strike in Syria targeted Hezbollah members and fighters under Lebanese terrorist Kuntar". Jerusalem Post. 
  16. ^ "Second reported IAF strike: Damascus says Israel strikes pro-Syrian Palestinian militia". Jerusalem Post. 
  17. ^ "Terrorist Kuntar reportedly killed trying to enlist Druse support for Assad, Hezbollah". Jerusalem Post. 
  18. ^ "IAF strikes in Syria, kills rocket launchers". Ynet News.