Home Frontline Defense Frontline Defense: May 5, 2020

Frontline Defense: May 5, 2020

A house that the Syrian government said was hit by shrapnel during an alleged Israeli strike outside Damascus on April 27, 2020. (Photo: ANA)


The Israeli Health Ministry announced that as of May 5, over 8,000 people had contracted Covid-19, with the virus claiming 248 lives. 


A Syrian government-affiliated news agency claimed Israeli helicopters carried out airstrikes in the Quneitra region of the Syrian Golan Heights. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, an NGO, said that Iranian forces were the target, although no one was hurt during the attack. The operation marks the fourth suspected attack in Syria over the past three weeks, following the targeted killing of four Iranian-affiliated fighters at the Mezzeh airbase near Damascus and bombing of a Hezbollah weapons cache in Homs last week. One report also suggests that the Russian-made S-300 air defense system deployed near Hom’s was unable to spot the incoming the Israeli warplanes.


Egypt released updated statistics regarding its ongoing operations to secure Sinai’s border with Gaza. Since 2015, the security forces have destroyed 3,000 tunnels at the border, with some more than two miles in length and 100 feet deep. The government also touted the recent killing of 126 terrorists, destruction of 228 hideouts, the arrest of 266 suspects, and the seizure of 630 explosive devices.

The Egyptian government said an improvised explosive device killed ten soldiers in the northern town of Bir al-Abed on April 30. The government refused to disclose additional details, but the Sinai affiliate of Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attack. Two days later, the Egyptian military said it had killed 18 suspected insurgents with the group at their hideout in the town. Security forces recovered 13 automatic weapons, two explosive belts, and other improvised explosive devices (IEDs) in the raid. 

Arab media reported that Russia had installed two reconnaissance radar arrays in Egypt near Suez, capable of detecting planes and missiles up to 700 miles away. “One station was built in Javelin Oved at a distance of about [25 miles] east of the Suez Canal” with a second post located “in the Gulf of Suez on a hill between Jabel al-Galla and Kabir.” The radars can provide data for anti-air missile interceptors at a range of up to approximately 200 miles. 

West Bank

A Palestinian man injured his hand when the pipebomb he was preparing to throw at a passing Israeli vehicle exploded prematurely near Hebron on April 28. 

Israeli security agency Shin Bet released details surrounding the arrest of three Hamas members in March. The men had planned bombings at Teddy Stadium in Jerusalem, as well as attacks against Israeli forces in the Ramallah and Binyamin areas.


For the second time in a week, a small Quadcopter drone flew from Gaza into Israel on May 4. Both times the UAV returned to Gaza without the IDF intercepting it. 

The Israeli Navy has seen an increase in the number of Gazans sailing outside of the designated fishing zone. The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) has recorded 70 incidents this year of fisherman sailing beyond the 15-mile limit from the coast. 


The IDF intercepted and arrested five individuals crossing from Lebanon into Israel on the night of May 3. According to one news report, security officials believe the suspects are Sudanese migrants hoping to find work in Israel.