Israeli jets and ground-to-ground missiles struck Syria, says Syrian regime forces after Israeli prime minister reiterated he would do what was needed to stop Hezbollah gaining "game-changing" Iranian weapons.

Smoke rises following explosions in Syria, seen from the occupied Golan Heights, September 23, 2014. (File photo)
Smoke rises following explosions in Syria, seen from the occupied Golan Heights, September 23, 2014. (File photo) (AP)

Syrian regime forces have said that Israel launched missiles targeting its outposts near Damascus in a wave of three pre-dawn attacks Tuesday and claimed that the regime air force hit one of the Israeli jets and shot down several of the missiles.

The Syrian regime air defence confronted the early morning attacks on outposts in the area of al Qutayfah in the Damascus countryside, according to a statement by the regime forces.

Several missiles were first launched from Lebanese airspace at 2:40am (local time), followed by two ground-to-ground missiles at 3:04am that were launched from the occupied Golan Heights and four missiles at 4:14 am, launched from the Tiberias area, or the Sea of Galilee, in northern Israel, the statement said.

The regime said Israeli jets fired a final barrage of four rockets from inside Israel, one of which was intercepted by the regime air defences while the others caused material damage.

The Israeli military declined to comment on the matter. 

TRT World Defence Analyst, Oubai Shahbandar reports.

Israel's policy on Syrian territory

Israel has pledged to prevent Syrian territory being used for Iran to set up bases or transfer high-quality weaponry to Lebanon's Hezbollah group.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, speaking to ambassadors of NATO countries in Israel on Tuesday, said the policies had not changed.

"We have a long-standing policy to prevent the transfer of game-changing weapons to Hezbollah from Syrian territory," Netanyahu said. "This policy has not changed, we back it up as necessary with action."

Israel has carried out dozens of air strikes inside Syria in the course of war in Syria, against what it says are suspected arms shipments believed to be bound for Lebanon's Hezbollah, which is fighting alongside Syrian regime forces. Tuesday's strike was the first this year.

'Flagrant Israeli aggression'

The regime forces statement described the attack as a "flagrant Israeli aggression" and renewed its warning of the dangerous repercussions of such attacks, holding Israel "fully responsibility for its consequences."

Some Syrian opposition-affiliated media reported that the Israeli planes targeted a Syrian regime forces depot while the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) said the depots belonged to both Hezbollah and the regime forces, adding that the strikes caused a series of explosions and a fire on site as well as serious material damage.

The (SOHR), which monitors the war in Syria through a network of activists on the ground, said there was no immediate word on any casualties.

The exact target could not be independently confirmed. 

Al Qutayfah is in the northeastern suburbs of Damascus where Syrian Republican Guard units are known to have major outposts.

Source: TRTWorld and agencies