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Syria threatens Israel, says airstrikes near Damascus open door to ‘all options’

• Abigail Hauslohner and William Booth
 The regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad warned Sunday that a series of powerful Israeli airstrikes near the Syrian capital opened the door to “all the options,” underscoring the possibility that Syria’s civil war could spill across regional borders.
Assad’s cabinet held an emergency meeting Sunday after explosions lit up the sky on the outskirts of Damascus on Friday and early Sunday.
Syrian state media said the air attack had targeted a military and scientific research facility. The Israeli military declined to comment on the strikes, but the Associated Press quoted an anonymous Middle East intelligence official as confirming that the research facility was hit.

The airstrikes targeted Fateh-110 missiles, which have precision guidance systems and may have been destined for the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah, the official said.

Although it was unclear whether Assad’s government would pursue direct military retaliation, the Syrian Foreign Ministry said the attack proved that Israel is collaborating with Syrian rebels.

“The Israeli attack on military sites in Syria is proof that there is communication between Israel and the terrorist groups who take their orders from al-Qaeda,” the ministry said in a statement broadcast on state television. The government uses the blanket term “terrorists” to refer to its opponents, who range from secular activists to militants linked to al-Qaeda.

Threat of weapons transfer

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