Massive Fireballs Light Up Syrian Sky After Israeli Strike; "Dozens" Of Iranian Soldiers Reportedly Killed

 04/30/2018 10:04 AM MDT
Credit:Danny Makki‏  -  Twitter
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Update 2: Multiple early unconfirmed reports from journalists inside Syria have put casualties at 40 killed and 60 wounded, mainly from the Zaynabiyoun Iranian-backed group which was located at the 47th brigade supply base targeted in Hama.

In Aleppo 7 rockets were reported to have exploded in apparently empty areas around Aleppo international airport. There are no reports of injuries or deaths in Aleppo, but images show an area was clearly hit.

As we mentioned previously, the strikes produced a small earthquake as monitors in Lebanon and Turkey recorded seismic activity that registered over 2 on the Richter scale.

Neither Israel nor the United States has yet to formally acknowledge the sizable missile attack, and there's some speculation in early Western media reporting that it could have been a U.S. coalition action, as it came the same day that pro-Syrian government militias clashed with US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) near the eastern city of Deir Ezzor.

Notably, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said earlier this month his country will continue “to move against Iran in Syria,” and last Thursday Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman vowed to strike at any attempt by Iran to establish a “military foothold” in Syria.

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Update: initial reports of mass injuries and perhaps casualties following the Iranian strike appear accurate, and as reporters on the ground located at the Hama National Hospital show, "civilians are donating blood for the Soldiers & Civilians who were wounded by the Israeli Israel Air Strikes tonight."

#Syria #Hama Photos from the Hama National Hospital As Civilians are donating blood for the Soldiers & Civilians who were wounded by the #Israeli #Israel Air Strikes tonight. pic.twitter.com/wDrk84Ykwj

— Ivan Sidorenko (@IvanSidorenko1) April 29, 2018

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Syrian state news reports a possible foreign attack on military bases in Hama and Aleppo provinces, citing multiple reports and videos now circulating which show massive fireballs lighting up the night sky. 

Dozens of pro-government social media accounts are claiming an Israeli strike on Brigade 47 weapons depot in Hama Sunday night. Syrian sate media says rockets from an "unspecified enemy" hit military locations inside Syria, citing "a new aggression with hostile missiles" but stopped short of identifying the aggressor.    

Danny Makki — a well-known journalist reporting from on the ground in Syria — also reports an official military source as saying "A hostile Foreign attack took place at locations in Hama and Aleppo at 10:30 local time tonight."

Wow! Video of a huge explosion just now in #Salhab in #Hama, reasons still unknown pic.twitter.com/AfWYRAzosT

— Danny Makki (@Dannymakkisyria) April 29, 2018

Another video of the huge explosion at 46 Brigade arms depot in #Hama, rumours of Israeli Strikes, could be sabotage as well. pic.twitter.com/ZnmYUTq4W7

— Danny Makki (@Dannymakkisyria) April 29, 2018

Makki further reports "the attacks this evening mainly targeted locations/positions with a strong presence of Iranian backed militias." This indicates that the likely attacker is Israel, though still not immediately confirmed. 

There are also widespread rumors of the recent landing of an Iranian transport plane at Hama Military Airport, possibly targeted in the attack, and reports that explosions were so big due to a direct hit on ammunition warehouses. 

#Syria #Hama A #Iran #Iranian Commander in Syria Says the Martyrs of 47th brigade Tonight are mostly from the Zainabiyoun Brigade in the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps #IRGC - Damage is explosion of ammunition warehouses - ( Liwa Zainebiyoun are Shia Pakistanis ) pic.twitter.com/gycIxKerjD

— Ivan Sidorenko (@IvanSidorenko1) April 29, 2018

Pro-rebel media also appears to be uploading footage of the strike — apparently so big it could be seen for miles — and these sources are also confirming a foreign military attack on government locations. Makki notes the airstrikes "caused an earthquake measuring 2.6 on the Richter scale."

The strikes on #Hama this evening caused an earthquake measuring 2.6 on the Richter scale

— Danny Makki (@Dannymakkisyria) April 29, 2018

Iranian state media has also confirmed the strikes amidst rumors that Iranian military personnel were targeted in the attacks. 

The strikes on #Hama this evening caused an earthquake measuring 2.6 on the Richter scale

— Danny Makki (@Dannymakkisyria) April 29, 2018

" 'Syria war will NOT stop' – Middle East expert warns of MORE airstrikes to come "

“The Israelis will continue striking these different targets and there are between 20-25 targets to choose from so it will play out considerably."

— Danny Makki (@Dannymakkisyria) April 29, 2018

According to Makki, citing Middle East experts, the Israelis might "continue striking these different targets and there are between 20-25 targets to choose from so it will play out considerably."

Should Israel be confirmed to have carried out the strikes, it would be the third such high level Israeli attack on Syria within a month. 

Meanwhile according to unconfirmed Twitter reports, "dozens upon dozens" of Iranian soldiers were killed in the attack.

Unconfirmed, so no official Syrian and or Iranian statement yet: dozens upon dozens of (mostly) Iranian soldiers (of all factions) have been killed tonight.

A bloodbath

— Brasco_Aad (@Brasco_Aad) April 29, 2018

What is concering is that the attacks take place after Putin personally warned Netanyahu against further strikes in Syria.

After the #Israel/i attack on #IRGC soldiers at T4 in #Homs Governorate on 9 april 2018, President #Putin of #Russia PERSONALLY warned Israeli PM #Netanyahu against further air strikes on Syrian allies in Syria.https://t.co/EeKzUHp2Nf

Obviously to no avail.

— Brasco_Aad (@Brasco_Aad) April 29, 2018

Developing story.

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