A suspected stray Syrian missile crashed in Cyprus in the early hours of this morning after Israeli warplanes launched attacks on Damascus, like reported by dailymail.co.uk.
The Israeli attacks targeted Syrian military positions in Homs and Damascus.
Syrian state media said the country’s air defences had intercepted several missiles and pictures appeared to show surface-to-air weapons hitting their target in Homs.
However, it appears that one of these may have strayed off course and landed in nearby Cyprus.
The explosion there, which hit 12 miles north of Nicosia at around 1am, was heard for miles around and set nearby hills ablaze, although no one was hurt.
Mustafa Akinci, the Turkish Cypriot leader, linked the incident to military operations in the Middle East but further investigations were underway by the military to establish what it was, he said.
‘It is evident it is not something stemming from our soil … It is one of the bad sides of the war in the region falling into our country,’ he said.
If verified, it would be the first time that Cyprus has been caught in the crosshairs of military operations in the Middle East despite its proximity to the region.
Officials were studying debris at the crash site, said Kudret Ozersay, the foreign minister of Northern Cyprus.
‘Initial findings indicate the object that caused the explosion was either an aircraft carrying explosives or a direct explosive,’ he said.
‘The writings and signs on the debris will allow us to understand exactly what happened soon.’
A Greek Cypriot military analyst, Andreas Pentaras, said the debris suggested it was a Russian-made S-200 missile.
Jamming technology could have diverted the missile, he said.
Residents told Cypriot media they saw a light in the sky then three loud explosions were heard for miles around.
Syrian state media claimed that a baby was among the four civilians killed in the Israeli airstrikes, while a monitor said at least 15 people were dead in total.
Syrian air defences had brought down a number of the missiles, according to state news agency SANA.
An Israeli military spokesman refused to comment on the reported deaths.
Iran and Hezbollah are fighting on the side of President Bashar al-Assad in the Syrian war.
Israel says they are trying to turn Syria into a new front against Israelis.