Israel Strikes Syrian Targets After Second Day of Stray Fire
The Israeli military said Sunday that it had attacked a series of targets belonging to the Syrian regime after projectiles from the neighboring country landed in its territory for the second day in a row.
The military "targeted two artillery positions and an ammunitions truck belonging to the Syrian regime," after "errant fire" from Syria hit the Israeli-controlled Golan Heights for a second day, it said in a statement.
No casualties were reported, but the Israeli military warned civilians to avoid gathering in open areas near the border.
Hours earlier, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed Saturday's attacks in a meeting with his cabinet.
"We will not tolerate any spillover or trickle whatsoever - neither mortars nor rockets, from any front. We will respond strongly to any attack on our territory or our citizens," he said.
Israel hasn't played an active role in the war in Syria, but has responded in the past when the fighting spilled over across the Syrian border.
In April, Israel shot down what it called “a target” over the Golan Heights.
Israel annexed the Golan area following the Six-Day War in 1967, but the move was never recognized by the international community.
US: It 'Will Be Very Difficult' for Qatar to Meet Arab Neighbors' Demands
U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Sunday that it "will be very difficult" for Qatar to meet some of the demands that Saudi Arabia and three of its allies are making on Doha, but urged that they negotiate an end to the Persian Gulf diplomatic standoff.
Tillerson, in a statement a day after Qatar rejected the demands as unreasonable and impinging on its sovereignty, said, "there are significant areas which provide a basis for ongoing dialogue leading to resolution." Tillerson did not say on what issues he thought Egypt, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and the Saudis could reach agreement with Doha.
The four Arab governments, which severed diplomatic links with Qatar more than two weeks ago on grounds that it was fomenting terrorism in the region, delivered their demands to Qatar last week through mediator Kuwait. Among other items, the four countries demanded that Qatar shut down the Al-Jazeera television network, long a source of conflict between Qatar and its neighbors.
The four countries also demanded that Qatar end its ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, Islamic State, al-Qaida and Lebanon's Iran-backed Hezbollah movement. In addition, the four Arab governments want Qatar to downgrade links with Iran, turn over opposition figures it has been holding and shut a Turkish military base in the emirate.
Qatar said the demands confirmed "what Qatar has said from the beginning — the illegal blockade has nothing to do with combating terrorism, it is about limiting Qatar's sovereignty, and outsourcing our foreign policy."
Tillerson said that "a productive next step would be for each of the countries to sit together and continue this conversation. We believe our allies and partners are stronger when they are working together towards one goal, which we all agree is stopping terrorism and countering extremism."
The top U.S. diplomat said that "each country involved has something to contribute to that effort. A lowering of rhetoric would also help ease the tension. The United States will continue to stay in close contact with all parties and will continue to support the mediation efforts of the emir of Kuwait."