Report: Western and Arab efforts prevented major Israeli strike on Lebanon army
Press reports on Wednesday said Arab states and Western countries, including Egypt, Jordan, France and the United States, made contacts at the highest levels of israel to prevent the Jewish state from launching a wide-scale military strike against the Lebanese army following the armed clashes last week in southern Lebanon.
French sources told Asharq Alawsat newspaper that the Israeli Defence Minister Ehud Barak told French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner in a telephone conversation after the deadly clash in southern Lebanon, that Israel was "intending to carry out a major military operation to discipline the Lebanese army and to "retaliate for the killing of a senior Israeli officer."
According to these sources, these contacts were made at the highest levels, including French President Nicolas Sarkozy and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.
According to the sources in Paris, the fact that Hizbullah was not part of the confrontation prevented new war. The sources in France told the newspaper that Israel "has no interest in launching war against the Lebanese army" because its is the only side that can "solve the problem of southern Lebanon and impose the state authority in this area."
According to the sources, Israel approached Paris through diplomatic channels to alert it about the weapon provided by France to the Lebanese Army and asked to stop supplying Lebanon with further arms, arguing that it was used against Israeli forces, or it can fall in the hands of Hizbullah.
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