Israel tightlipped over latest reported Syria strike

Damascus, May 5: Israel on Sunday kept up a wall of official silence following reports of an overnight strike on a Damascus research centre, in what was the second such strike in 48-hours.

The latest attack targeted the Jamraya military research centre in Damascus, Syria's official news agency reported, without saying whether anyone had been killed or wounded.

If confirmed, it would be would be the second Israeli strike on Syrian soil within three days.

Israeli officials were tight lipped over the latest strike, with no comment from the military or from government officials, mirroring their earlier silence over the Friday strike.

Eyal Zisser, an expert on Syria at Tel Aviv University, said the weapons that were apparently destroyed would not have changed the strategic balance in the region but was an Israeli warning to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

"Israel is actually changing the equation and saying: I won't let weapons be transferred to Hezbollah," he said, suggesting that Israel was "exploiting the weakness of Assad who has his hands tied" with the two-year conflict raging in Syria.

"The Israeli action didn't come after chemical weapons were used in northern Syria, or following the massacres committed by the regime across the country or when missiles were fired at population centres. "It comes, apparently, against Israel and Hezbollah. Bashar understands this message," he said.

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