Israeli hospital treating UN peacekeepers shot in Syria

Two UN peacekeepers are receiving urgent medical attention in Israel after being shot in Syria.

The Austrian soldiers were injured in gunfire during fighting between fighters loyal to the Assad regime and rebel forces.

A spokesman for Rambam hospital in Haifa said that their injuries were not now considered life-threatening. The pair were airlifted to the Golan Heights from within Syria, then transported to Haifa in an Israeli military helicopter. "One was hit in the chest and is in moderate condition, and the other to the hand, and he is lightly hurt," said David Ratner.

Although the Rambam hospital is designated as one to care for UN soldiers in the Middle East, this is the first instance of its doctors helping peacekeepers injured in the Syrian conflict, which began in spring 2011.

The peacekeepers were monitoring the border between Israel and Syria but were caught in the crossfire and shot as they headed toward Damascus airport.

Last updated: 12:02pm, November 30 2012