Iran-backed militias fighting alongside the Syrian army have moved within three miles of the Israeli border.
“The Iranian-backed militias are trying to consolidate their sphere of influence all the way from southwest of Damascus to the Israeli border,” said Suhaib al Ruhail, an official from the Liwa al Furqan rebel group that operates in the area, according to Reuters.
A senior Iranian commander said several months ago that Iran will provide military advisers to Syria for as long as necessary and stressed that “the advisory help isn’t only in the field of planning but also on techniques and tactics.”
A report last month said Iran is establishing a permanent military base outside El-Kiswah, located 14 kilometers (8 miles) south of Damascus. An airstrike earlier this month attributed to Israel reportedly hit an Iranian compound in that area.
Israel has been lobbying Washington and Moscow to deny Iran, Hizbullah and other Shi’ite militias any permanent bases in Syria, and to keep them away from the Golan Heights, as they gain ground while helping Damascus beat back Sunni-led rebels.
A western intelligence source confirmed rebel reports that Iranian-backed militias including Hizbullah were playing a major role in the ongoing battles.
Full article: Iran-backed militias in Syria push closer to Israel border (World Tribune)