Saturday , June 22 2024

Hezbollah fires dozens of rockets into northern Israel


BEIRUT: Missiles fired from southern Lebanon were caught on camera as they hit Meron, a farming collective in northern Israel. Hezbollah claimed responsibility for the rockets, several of which seemed to make it through Israel’s Iron Dome air defence system.

Lebanon’s Iran-backed Hezbollah movement said Saturday it had targeted northern Israel with drones and guided missiles after cross-border Israeli strikes killed three people, including two of its members.

A statement from the group said it “launched a complex attack using explosive drones and guided missiles on the headquarters of the Al Manara military command and a gathering of forces from the 51st Battalion of the Golani Brigade.”

The Israeli army said its Iron Dome air-defense system “successfully intercepted a suspicious aerial target that crossed from Lebanon into the area of Manara in northern Israel.”

The army also “struck the sources of fire” of several anti-tank missiles launched from Lebanon into the Manara border area, it added.

Lebanon’s National News Agency later reported that an Israeli airstrike on a house in Srebbine village had wounded 11 people, one seriously.

Earlier Saturday, Israeli fighter jets “struck a Hezbollah military structure in the area of Qouzah in southern Lebanon,” the army said in a statement.

The border between Lebanon and Israel has seen near-daily exchanges of fire since the Israel-Hamas war in Gaza began nearly seven months ago.

In two separate statements earlier Saturday, Hezbollah mourned the deaths of two fighters from the villages of Kfar Kila and Khiam.

It said they had been “martyred on the road to Jerusalem,” the phrase it uses to refer to members killed by Israeli fire.

Overnight Saturday to Sunday Hezbollah said it had launched dozens of rockets at the Israeli military base at Meron, northern Israel.

The group said it was in reprisal for Israeli attacks on civilian homes at several places in southern Lebanon, including Kfar Kila and Srebbine.

An Israeli army statement said its Iron Dome system had succeeded in intercepting missiles fired toward northern Israel from Lebanon’s al-Manara region.

It added that it had fired at “military infrastructure” in the village of Srebbine.

Hezbollah has intensified its targeting of military sites in Israel since tensions soared between Israel and Iran over the bombing of Tehran’s Damascus consulate on April 1, widely blamed on Israel.

According to Times of Israel, the two sides have traded fire on a near-daily basis along the border since the start of the war in Gaza. Hezbollah says it is acting in solidarity with the Palestinian Hamas militant group, which triggered the war with its Oct. 7 attack into southern Israel.

The low-intensity fighting has repeatedly threatened to boil over as Israel has targeted senior Hezbollah militants in recent months.

Hezbollah said earlier Monday that its fighters shot down an Israeli drone, the fourth to be brought down since the war began.

Israeli human rights group B’Tselem said Monday that Israel has been “committing the crime of starvation” in Gaza for months in violation of international law.

Also Monday, Palestinian civil defence in Gaza said it had found 283 bodies on the grounds of a Khan Younis hospital, and Israel’s chief of military intelligence resigned over the failure to prevent the Oct. 7 attack, the first senior official to do so. (Int’l Monitoring Desk)

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