Hizbollah Sets up Observation Posts on Lebanon-Israel Border
Hizbollah has set up some 20 observation posts on Lebanon's border with Israel, an AFP correspondent observed Thursday, as it tries to step up control over border traffic.
The Hizbollah Islamist movement, which spearheaded Lebanon's armed resistance to Israel's 22-year occupation, has put up posts along the barbed wire stretching from the coastal town of Naqoura to the outskirts of Kfar Shuba on the western flank of Mount Hermon, near Syria, the correspondent saw.
The group, according to a Lebanese security official, is looking to control entries and departures at Naqoura, the UN-operated border post that is the only remaining crossing between Lebanon and Israel.
Hizbollah wants both to stop any potential Israeli infiltrators from entering Lebanon and block anyone who collaborated with Israeli occupation from leaving, the official said.
"Hizbollah is apparently looking to avoid any possible movement at the border," the official said.
The Hizbollah fighters, organized in small groups of three or four and armed with assault rifles, set themselves up at former points of passage between the two countries or in posts left behind by the Israelis.
The Hizbollah members patrol the area with motorcycles and automobiles and keep an eye on anyone looking to cross at the border posts, which have been closed since the end of Israel's withdrawal May 24th.
In Naqoura, Hizbollah set itself up in two former seaside resorts held by Israel's proxy militia in the area.
Hizbollah launched the measures the day after five Lebanese left the former occupied zone for Israel, the first known to leave since Israel's withdrawal, when 6,000 former militia members and their family members headed south -- MARJAYOUN, Lebanon (AFP)
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