The Syrian army and its allies have taken control of a strategic hill overlooking the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights as it pushes forward with an offensive to seize the remaining parts of the southwest from rebels, state TV and rebels said on Monday.
It said the army had taken control of al-Haara hill on the second day of an offensive to take back the last parts of southwest Syria in Quneitra province that are in rebel hands and are close to the border with Israel.
The hilltop, which had a major anti-aircraft radar base that was part of elaborate Syrian army defenses against Israel, and is the highest ground in Deraa province, fell into rebel hands in October 2014.
It has been heavily bombed by Russian and Syrian army raids in the past two days as the army has moved closer to the Israeli border after gaining control of most of Deraa province to the east in a push that began last June, according to rebels and a war monitor.
A Syrian army source quoted by state media said the army had made territorial gains in Quneitra province where it seized the town of Mashara, about 11 km (7 miles) from the Golan frontier.