Israel cancels civil flights in north amid Syria tensions

Jerusalem, May 6 (IANS) The Israeli Defense Forces has said it would shut down civil air traffic in northern Israel until Thursday.

The decision came amid escalating tensions between Israel and its northern neighbours, Syria and Lebanon, over an alleged Israeli air strike against missile caches near the Syrian capital Damascus Friday and Sunday, Xinhua reported.

Israel’s airline Arkia Sunday cancelled nearly 10 flights between the northern city of Haifa and the Red Sea port city of Eilat.

Israel did not release any official statement regarding the attacks on Syrian military facilities.

However, Xinhua said that officials speaking on condition of anonymity with foreign media outlets, confirmed that Israeli jets struck a shipment of missiles destined for Hezbollah Friday.

The Israeli military has deployed two Iron Dome anti-missile batteries in two northern cities of Haifa and Safed, due to the escalating tension.

Syria’s Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal al Mekdad told CNN that the alleged Israeli strikes were a “declaration of war”.

Damascus also said Israel’s attack “opens the door widely before all eventualities”.

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