Syrian regime & rebel forces clash in the Golan Heights


Syrian rebel forces reported took control on Thursday of the sole border crossing operated by United Nations peacekeeping forces in the disputed Golan Heights along the cease-fire line between Israel and Syria. Shortly after, there were reports that Syrian government forces had retaken the Quneitra crossing, however it isunclear who now has control.According to Syrian state news agency, SANA, regime fighters had “repelled terrorist groups” that had “tried” to take over the Quneitra border crossing. Israeli media also reported Syrian forces has control of the crossing.

However, according to Ahmad al-Basheer, a member of the local revolutionary committee in Quneitra, the crossing remained under rebel control and the Quneitra province had been “liberated.” The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported that there was “a campaign of simultaneous attacks” against government checkpoints in Quneitra province and said there were clashes in the village of Qahtaniya, near the old town of Quneitra. The fighting was reportedly contained to the Syrian side, however an Israeli military official said two mortar shells landed in Israeli territory Thursday morning. Meanwhile, a day after Syrian forces and Hezbollah fighters seized control of Qusayr, the strategic town near Syria’s border with Lebanon, Syrian forces have begun pushing toward nearby villages, clashing with opposition fighters around Debaa and Buwayda. Further escalating concerns over spillover into neighboring Lebanon, several rockets hit the Hezbollah strong hold of Baalbek late Wednesday. Heavy fighting was also reported in the suburbs of Damascus, where government forces are working to push opposition fighters away from the capital.