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Israeli army pledges help to Syrian Golan village

Israeli army pledges help to Syrian Golan village

SANA, the official Syrian news agency, said the incident involved a Jabhat al-Nusra suicide bomber who detonated a vehicle bomb near houses on the outskirts of Hader, leaving nine people dead and 23 injured.

"A suicide bomber from Al-Nusra Front detonated a vehicle bomb in the midst of the homes of citizens on the outskirts of Hader, killing nine people and injuring at least 23", the agency said.

The statement follows an explosion inside the village Friday in which nine were killed and 23 were wounded, according to reports from Syria.

Syrian government forces and their pro-government allies first broke the militant group's siege of their part of the city in September and have been advancing against IS positions since then.

"The IDF [Israel Defense Forces] is prepared and ready to help the villagers and prevent damage or occupation of the village of Hadar out of a commitment to the Druze population", an army statement said, adding that "the claims of Israeli involvement and assistance to global jihad elements in the fighting on the Golan Heights are groundless".

After the incident, dozens of Israeli Druze protested at the Syrian border against the escalating violence in Hader.

Al-Nusra Front is a now-changed name for a jihadist group that was formerly Al-Qaeda's affiliate in Syria and is now known as the Fateh al-Sham Front.

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The decision came just hours after a Druze resident of northern Israel was hit by stray gunfire from Syria.

Israel's Druze, some of whom have reached the senior echelons of the Israeli military and government, have been calling for help on behalf of their brethren in Syria, both at home and overseas.

The Druze in Israel are part of the country's Arab minority. They were assisted by units of the Syrian army.

The Quneitra area of Syria, where Hader village is located, is particularly sensitive to Israel because it is adjacent to the Golan Heights area that it captured from Syria in 1967.

Druze residents tried to cross into Syria, but were held back by Israeli soldiers, Israel's military said on Twitter.

Speaking on a visit to London, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said "We are also guarding our borders".

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