Hezbollah Claims Responsibility for Strike Wounding Israeli Soldiers
Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah claimed responsibility on Wednesday for explosions which wounded four Israeli soldiers who infiltrated into southern Lebanon last week.
Nasrallah told Beirut-based Al-Mayadeen television that Hezbollah fighters planted bombs in an area they knew in advance Israeli soldiers would pass through, and detonated one of them when a first group of special forces reached the area.
A second bomb was triggered when Israeli reinforcements arrived on the scene, Nasrallah said, giving the group’s first account of an incident about which Israeli military officials have given few details.
The Lebanese army said last week the Israeli soldiers had crossed 400 meters into Lebanese territory when the blasts occurred. An Israeli spokesman said only that four soldiers were wounded during “an activity near the border”.
“This was a controlled and deliberate operation,” Nasrallah said of the explosions. “It was not accidental, and was not (caused by) a landmine left behind by the Israeli occupation.”
Nasrallah did not say how the Hezbollah fighters knew in advance of the Israeli incursion, but said the group “will not accept these territorial violations” into Lebanon.
The border between Israel and Lebanon has been largely quiet since Israel and Hezbollah fought a month-long war in 2006.