Lebanon’s Hezbollah fires drones, Israel mounts air strikes


Beirut/Jerusalem (Reuters) – Lebanon’s Hezbollah said it had launched explosive drones at an Israeli command position on Sunday and Israeli air strikes hit south Lebanon, as violence prompted by the war in Gaza rumbled on across the Israeli-Lebanese frontier.

The Israeli army said “suspicious aerial targets” had crossed from Lebanon and two were intercepted. Two Israeli soldiers were moderately wounded and a number of others lightly injured from shrapnel and smoke inhalation, it said.

Israeli fighter jets carried out “an extensive series of strikes on Hezbollah terror targets in Lebanese territory”, it said.

There were no immediate reports of casualties in Lebanon.

The exchanges of fire between Israel and Hezbollah, a heavily armed group backed by Iran, have marked their worst hostilities since a 2006 war. The violence has largely been contained to the border area.

“The resistance will continue to exhaust the enemy, and will not stop unless the aggression against Gaza and Lebanon stops,”

senior Hezbollah official Sheikh Ali Damoush said in a speech on Sunday, which was emailed by the group’s media office.

Hezbollah said it had used the explosive drones to attack an Israeli command position near Ya’ara in Israel at 10 a.m. (0800 GMT).

Sirens had sounded in Israel at several locations at the border.

In Beirut, residents saw what appeared to be two warplanes streaking across a clear blue sky, leaving vapour trails behind them.

Declaring its actions were in support of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, Hezbollah has been carrying out frequent attacks. It announced 10 on Saturday.

In an attack at a different location at the border at 10 a.m. (0800 GMT) on Sunday, Hezbollah said its fighters had achieved a direct hit on an Israeli position using “appropriate weapons”.

Israeli air strikes pounded the outskirts of the village of Yaroun in Lebanon – not far from the location of that attack -according to the Lebanese National News Agency and a witness in the area.

The air strikes broke windows of houses, shops and a school in the nearby village of Rmeich, Toni Elias, a priest in Rmeich, told Reuters by phone.

Violence at the border has killed more than 120 people in Lebanon, including 85 Hezbollah fighters and 16 civilians. In Israel, the hostilities have killed seven soldiers and four civilians.

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