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Israeli strikes knock out Damascus, Aleppo airports — Syria state media

DAMASCUS, Syria, October 23 ------ Israeli strikes put out of service war-torn Syria's two main airports, state media reported citing a military source, with the transport ministry saying flights were re-routed to Latakia.

While Israeli strikes have repeatedly caused the grounding of flights at the government-controlled airports in the capital Damascus and the northern city of Aleppo, it is the second time simultaneous strikes have hit the facilities since this month's conflict between Israel and Hamas began. "At around 5:25 am (0225 GMT), the Israeli enemy carried out... an air attack... targeting Damascus and Aleppo international airports, leading to the death of a civilian worker at Damascus airport and wounding another," the military source said in the statement carried by state news agency SANA. "Material damage to the airports' runways put them out of service," the statement added. The transport ministry said flights were diverted to Latakia airport.

The military source said the "simultaneous" strikes came "from the direction of the Mediterranean west of Latakia and from the direction of the occupied Syrian Golan", according to the statement. On October 12, simultaneous strikes knocked both Damascus and Aleppo airports out of service, Syria said at the time. Last weekend, Israeli strikes targeted Aleppo airport, wounding five people, a war monitor reported, also putting it out of service, according to the authorities. During more than a decade of war in Syria, Israel has launched hundreds of air strikes on its northern neighbour, primarily targeting Iran-backed forces and Lebanese Hezbollah fighters as well as Syrian army positions. Israel rarely comments on individual strikes it carries out on Syria, but it has repeatedly said it will not allow its arch foe Iran, which supports President Bashar al-Assad's government, to expand its presence there.



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