Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

'New York Post' slammed for publishing ISIS execution images

Read more

DEBATE

Back to Square One?

Read more

DEBATE

Israel-Gaza: Back to Square One?

Read more

DEBATE

Israel-Gaza conflict: 72-hour ceasefire deal sets stage for Cairo talks

Read more

WEB NEWS

Web users divided over Darren Wilson

Read more

FOCUS

Spain's El Hierro to become world's first self-powered island

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

A bellwether for what not to do

Read more

ENCORE!

Luc Besson back in action with Scarlett Johansson in 'Lucy'

Read more

FOCUS

Israel's minorities and military service

Read more

  • Interactive: Relive the Liberation of Paris in WWII

    Read more

  • French village rallies behind besieged elderly British couple

    Read more

  • Netanyahu compares Hamas to IS, Gaza offensive to continue

    Read more

  • France’s ex-PM Juppé sets up presidential clash with Sarkozy

    Read more

  • Brutal IS beheading video sparks social media pushback

    Read more

  • France’s Hollande says global security ‘worst since 2001’

    Read more

  • France urges Iran, others in region, to join fight against IS

    Read more

  • A new view on Normandy landings, 70 years on

    Read more

  • Video: Dozens arrested despite smaller protests in Ferguson

    Read more

  • Dozens killed as landslides strike Japan’s Hiroshima

    Read more

  • Suspected Ebola cases in Austria, new drug raises hopes

    Read more

  • WWII anniversary highlights best - and worst - of Paris police

    Read more

  • Headscarf at the beach sparks French MEP’s fury

    Read more

  • Video: Life in under-siege Donetsk

    Read more

  • Racism, riots and police violence: USA under scrutiny

    Read more

Middle east

Syrian tanks enter Golan Heights buffer zone, says Israel

© AFP ARCHIVE

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2012-11-05

Israel’s military lodged a complaint with the United Nations on Saturday after three Syrian tanks allegedly entered the demilitarised zone in the Golan Heights which separates the two countries, just a few kilometres from an Israeli military post.

Three Syrian tanks entered the demilitarized zone in the Golan Heights on Saturday, prompting Israel to complain to U.N. peacekeepers, a military spokesman said. The foray would be the first such violation in 40 years and hikes concerns that violence from Syria’s civil war could heat up a long-quiet frontier.

Israel’s relatively low-key response of turning to the U.N. suggested it did not see the Syrian armor as an immediate threat.

But the entry marks the most serious spillover of Syria’s turmoil at the frontier to date. Misfired Syrian shells have exploded inside Israel on several occasions and a tourist site was temporary shut after armed Syrians were spotted nearby recently.

The three tanks entered the DMZ on Saturday and Israel lodged a complaint with the peacekeepers, an Israeli military spokeswoman said, speaking on condition of anonymity in line with military protocol. She did not elaborate on what the tanks were doing.

The Israeli news site Ynet said the tanks and two armored personnel carriers drove a few kilometers (miles) away from Israeli military positions.

Israel captured the Golan Heights from Syria in the 1967 Mideast war. It later annexed the strategic territory overlooking northern Israel in a move that is not recognized internationally. Before 1967, Syria used the highlands to shell Israeli villages and farms.

The DMZ, which is about 7 kilometers (3.5 miles) at its widest and 200 meters (yards) at its narrowest, was created after the 1973 war in which Syria tried to retake the plateau.

Marco Carminjani, an official with the U.N. body supervising the zone, said he could not immediately confirm the entry of the tanks. But if the report is true, he said, it would be a violation of the 1974 disengagement agreement between Syria and Israel. He said it would be the first such move in the zone since the accord.

There was no immediate comment from Syria.

Israel and Syria have been bitter enemies for decades and have fought
several wars but the border has been mostly quiet for years.

There is concern in Israel that if the regime of Syrian President Bashar Assad is toppled, the country could fall into the hands of Islamic extremists or descend into sectarian warfare, destabilizing the region.

Israeli officials have also expressed concern that the frontier region could turn into a lawless area like Egypt’s Sinai desert, where Islamic militants have gained strength since the ouster last year of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak.

 

 

 

(AP)

Date created : 2012-11-03

  • MIDDLE EAST

    Iran designed drone sent into Israeli airspace, Hezbollah says

    Read more

  • SYRIA - ISRAEL

    At least ten killed along Israel-Syrian border

    Read more

  • UN

    Syrian crisis ‘tragedy of the age’, says Morsi at UN

    Read more

COMMENT(S)