Israeli warplanes have reportedly carried out a raid targeting a site in Syria at which the Assad regime is believed to have produced chemical weapons.
A statement from the Syrian military said that two people died when Israeli aircraft bombed a site near to the eastern town of Masyaf. The AFP news agency reports that Masyaf lies between the central city of Hama and a port used by the Russian navy as well as by forces from Syria's allies Iran and Hezbollah.
The strike reportedly hit a training camp and a branch of the Scientific Studies and Research Centre (SSRC), an institution accused by the US of helping to develop the sarin gas used in a deadly attack on the Syrian town of Khan Sheikhun in April.
Israel has not confirmed the airstrikes, but in a series of tweets, former military intelligence head Amos Yadlin said the site "produces the chemical weapons and barrel bombs that have killed thousands of Syrian civilians".
Mr Yadlin added that if the strikes did indeed come from Israel then it proves that the country "intends to enforce its redlines despite the fact that the great powers are ignoring them".
While also stopping short of confirming Israel's involvement in the airstrikes, the former national security advisor Yaakov Amidror also identified the SSRC as a key site in the development of chemical weapons.
"It is the first time that the target which was attacked is a formal Syrian facility, not just a warehouse but a centre of R&D and...responsible for producing the chemical weapons in the past and many other weapons systems," Mr Amidror said.
He added: "We will not allow Iran and Hezbollah to build the capabilities which allow them to attack Israel from Syria...And we will not allow them to build the capabilities of Hezbollah under the chaotic umbrella of Syria."
The Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad has previously denied its use of chemical weapons and did not mention the research centre in its statement announcing the airstrikes.
"Syria's army warns of the serious repercussions of such acts of aggression on the security and stability of the region," the military's statement read.