Israel hosts wounded Syrians through Golan
GOLAN - Hürriyet Daily News
Most of the Syrian nationals who crossed the border to Israeli for treatment were severely wounded, and two have died, according to hospital officials.Nearly 144 Syrians wounded in the civil war have crossed the Israeli border in the Golan Heights from a Syrian border town that has been under the control of the Free Syrian Army (FSA) since early 2013, receiving medical treatment at an Israeli hospital.
Among the 14 Syrians still receiving treatment at the Galilee Hospital in the Golan area, Ahmed, a 14 year-old boy from the town of Deraa in Syria, was brought to the border by his father two months ago after he lost one of his legs in a land mine explosion, officials from the hospital said.
Ahmed’s father brought his son to the border after Ahmed and his brother hit a landmine while driving a truck. They were taken by Israeli soldiers to the hospital.
“Everything is OK. I feel good and happy … I will go back home when I get better,” Ahmed said, adding that his brother had been released from the hospital two days ago. Donors in the town have donated to Ahmed a prosthesis leg.
Most of the Syrian nationals who crossed the border to Israeli for treatment were severely wounded, and two have died, according to hospital officials.
The Syrian civil war has frequently spilled over into Israeli territory. Over 60 artillery shells from the Syrian army have landed in Israeli territory during its fight with the FSA, which controls a border town in the Golan Heights. Israel has responded six times, an Israeli security official told the Hürriyet Daily News.
The sound and smoke of exchange of artilleries between Syrian army and rebels in Jubata al-Khashab, a Syrian town adjacent to the ceasefire line between Syria and Israel in Golan Heights, was visible as an Israeli army officer was briefing a group of Turkish journalists last week.
Real concern over al-Qaeda-linked groups
“Every day there is fighting. The Syrian military usually uses artillery. But they do not maneuver into the area where they are not allowed to have military equipment, inside the area of separation according to the 1947 agreement,” the officer said.
The area is still tense as the fighting between rebels and Syrian army continues, but the real concern for Israel is the al-Qaeda-linked groups located on the southern part of Syrian-Israeli border, the Israeli officer added.
“Jubata al-Khashab used to be a Sunni village with a population of approximately 5,000 very poor peasants. It was the first village to be conquered by FSA rebels in July 2012, because of its proximity to the Israeli border. The distance between the village and the Alfa line is less than one kilometer,” the officer said.
Today, there are less than 400 people remaining in the village, most of them involved with the fighting. The rest of the civilians have fled to a nearby town under the control of the Syrian regime.
The FSA has not succeeded in taking control of Quneitra, the largest city in the region.