Jordan army clashes with Islamic State militants fleeing Syrian forces

Jordan army clashes with Islamic State militants fleeing Syrian forces

Israel's military said Thursday it killed seven suspected Islamic State-affiliated militants in territory it controls near the border with Syria, reflecting the risk of spillover as the Assad regime presses a military campaign to retake the country's southwest.

The terrorists came as close to 200 meters to the Israel-Syria border when Israeli troops launched an attack against them, Israel Defense Forces Spokesman Ronen Manelis said.

Israeli soldiers patrol the cease-fire line between Israel and Syria, as seen from the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights.

Lieberman said Israel will have "no cause to intervene or operate in Syrian territory" if Damascus respects a 1974 disengagement agreement between the two sides - and as long as Syria doesn't become a staging ground for Iranian forces to attack Israel or transfer arms to Hezbollah in Lebanon. "Once the situation has been stabilized, these posts will be handed over to personnel from the Syrian government forces".

More alarming for Israel, however, is the Iranian presence at the border.

Most of the Golan Heights have been occupied by Israel since the 1967 war. Russian Federation on Wednesday said that Iran had withdrawn its heavy weaponry to about 50 miles from the border, a measure Israeli officials said was inadequate.

Facebook bans pages aimed at USA election interference
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The Syrian conflict erupted in 2011 and Russian intervention in 2015 helped to turn the tide in President Bashar al-Assad's favour.

Reflecting the tension along the frontier, Israel's military said Thursday that its aircraft fired on "several armed terror operatives in the southern Syrian Golan Heights" overnight and that troops were on high alert.

"We applied rules of engagement and members of the Daesh (Islamic State) gang were forced to retreat inside Syria", an army source told Jordanian state news agency Petra.

That message was conveyed by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to Russian President Vladimir Putin when they met in Moscow last month, a senior Israeli official said.

According to the ministry, United Nations peacekeepers also returned to the frontier Thursday, years after an escalation in fighting and abduction of United Nations troops had prompted them to withdraw.

Israel Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman visited northern Israel Thursday, where he said he believes Assad's forces will help maintain calm.

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