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Iran accuses Israel of killing a spy chief and 3 of its top Revolutionary Guards in Syria, escalating tensions in the region

Smoke rises after an Israeli missile strike on Damascus, Syria which killed four members of Iran's Revolutionary Guards.
Smoke rises after an Israeli missile strike on Damascus, Syria which killed four members of Iran's Revolutionary Guards.Sham Fm/Reuters
  • An airstrike on Damascus on Saturday killed four senior members of Iran's Revolutionary Guards.

  • Iran has accused Israel of being behind the attack and has vowed to respond.

  • The attack is the latest escalation in tensions in the region following the outbreak of the Israel-Hamas war.

Iran has accused Israel of being behind an airstrike in Damascus, Syria, that killed four of its "military advisors," according to Iranian media.

Iran's Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Public Relations Department said that Israel struck the Mazzeh neighborhood in Damascus, where several diplomatic missions are located, according to Tasnim, an Iranian news agency affiliated with the guards.

The department blamed the airstrikes on fighter jets belonging to what it described as the "savage and criminal Zionist regime."

The attack killed the chief of the IRGC intelligence in Syria and his deputy along with two other members of Iran's Revolution Guards, according to Iran's semi-official Mehr news agency.

The Islamic Revolution Guards Corps is a powerful branch of the Iranian Armed Forces and wields significant military, political, and economic power.

The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that the strike targeted a four-story building and that the total death toll was at least 10 people, including at least one Syrian civilian.

Iranian foreign ministry spokesman Nasser Kanani said on Saturday that Tehran would respond "at the appropriate time and place" and condemned Israel for "an escalation in aggressive and provocative attacks."

The attack is the latest escalation in tensions in the region following the outbreak of war between Israel and Hamas.

Israel has not yet commented on the strike, which is in line with the country's policy to neither confirm nor deny allegations of assassinations or strikes against Iran.

Since the beginning of the Syrian civil war in 2011, senior members of Iran's Revolutionary Guard have been present in Syria to support President Bashar al-Assad's regime against rebellion.

Throughout the war, Israel has launched hundreds of airstrikes on Syrian territory, predominantly targeting Iran-backed forces and Syrian Army positions, which have intensified since the Israel-Hamas war began, per AFP.

Iran has positioned itself as an ally to Hamas and has been accused by the US State Department of providing the militant group with funding, weapons, and training.

The latest airstrike comes four days after Iran's Revolutionary Guards said they attacked an Israeli spy base in Iraq's semi-autonomous Kurdistan region.

Read the original article on Business Insider