Assad aide: Israel sent undercover troops to Syria

Syrian senior presidential advisor Buthaina Shaaban speaks to a Syrian TV reporter at the United Nations Offices in Geneva, on January 26, 2014

A senior aide to Syrian President Bashar Assad accused Israel of involvement in the Syrian civil war, saying it sent troops to bolster rebel forces fighting to topple Assad in a conflict that has already claimed the lives of 140,000 people.

In a television interview with a Hezbollah-linked channel late Monday, Syrian presidential adviser Buthaina Shaaban claimed IDF officers were physically present in Syria to monitor the fighting and call in troops to assist the opposition.

She said some of the undercover Israeli troops had been wounded in battle.

Israel has repeatedly stated that it has no direct involvement in the Syrian war. It has hit back when shells fired during the conflict have landed inside Israeli territory, and treated hundreds of Syrian casualties at a border IDF field hospital and at hospitals inside Israel.