July 21, 2024


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The Israeli army approves the “attack” plan in Lebanon

The Israeli army approves the “attack” plan in Lebanon

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The Israeli military said on Tuesday evening that its senior officers had approved “operational plans for an attack in Lebanon” as fears grew that Israel and Hezbollah could slide into an all-out conflict.

The Lebanese armed group and Israeli forces have exchanged fire on an almost daily basis since the beginning of the war between Israel and Hamas in Gaza, but the exchanges escalated last week, as the Iranian-backed Hezbollah fired dozens of rockets at Israel after it killed an Israeli soldier. One of the group’s leaders in an air strike.

Despite the intense exchanges, which have displaced tens of thousands of people and caused casualties in both Lebanon and Israel, the two sides have yet to drift into all-out war, with the United States leading a diplomatic campaign to calm the situation. .

However, Israeli officials have repeatedly said they are prepared to take military action in the absence of a diplomatic solution. The military said on Tuesday that in addition to approving attack plans, officers made decisions on “increasing the readiness of forces in the field.”

The announcement came hours after Hezbollah, one of the most heavily armed non-state factions in the world, released a 9-minute video of what it said was footage collected by its surveillance drones of parts of Israel, including the northern port city of Haifa. .

In addition to views of the port, which is located about 30 kilometers from the Lebanese border, the undated footage included what Hezbollah said were images of other military infrastructure.

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The video sparked an angry reaction from Israel, with Foreign Minister Yisrael Katz warning that his government was “very close to the moment of making the decision to change the rules against Hezbollah and Lebanon.”

He added: “In an all-out war, Hezbollah will be destroyed and Lebanon will be subjected to a severe blow.” books On the social media platform X.

He added: “The State of Israel will pay the price on the front and internal fronts, but with a strong and united nation, and with the full power of the state.” [Israel Defense Forces]“We will restore security to the people of the north.”

Israel and Hezbollah fought a 34-day war in 2006. In an attempt to prevent tensions from turning into a full-blown conflict again, US envoy Amos Hochstein arrived in the region this week for meetings in Israel and Lebanon.

US envoy Amos Hochstein was in Beirut on Tuesday after visiting Israel the day before © AP

Speaking in Beirut on Tuesday, Hochstein told reporters that the two sides had reached a “dangerous time and a critical moment.”

“It is in everyone’s interest to resolve this problem quickly and diplomatically. This is something that can be achieved and is urgent.”

Hochstein’s visit is the latest in a series of trips he has made to the region in recent months in an attempt to find a diplomatic solution to the tensions. But the talks are still stalled.

Israel calls on Hezbollah to withdraw its forces from the vicinity of its border with Lebanon. But Hezbollah insists that it will not agree to any agreement before a ceasefire is reached in Gaza.

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