Israeli Foreign Minister threatens Damascus over Hezbollah activity
Israel's Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom demanded on Sunday that Syria and Lebanon restrain Hezbollah from "attacking its northern border", but did not specify the steps his country would take if they failed to comply.
Shalom's comments followed Friday's exchange of artillery fire between Israel and Hezbollah. On Saturday, Hezbollah fired anti-aircraft shells over the northern Israeli town of Kiryat Shemona. One building suffered minor damage, however no injuries were reported.
The Israeli Minister was quoted by AP as saying, "We say to Syria and Lebanon as responsible parties for Hezbollah behavior ... that if Hezbollah activities continue and constitute an undermining of security of the citizens of Israel, we will have no choice but to defend ourselves."
"We don't want to use the language of threats now and say what we will do and how we will do it," Shalom said.
"I think the regime in Syria knows very well what our capabilities are, and I don't think it's worthwhile for it to put us to the test."
Meanwhile, also on Sunday, Syria's Tishrin newspaper charged that Israel was trying "to expand the circle of its aggression and deliberately provoke and threaten more than one Arab country," in hopes of slowing progress on the "road map" peace plan with the Palestinians long enough to deal with its internal problems. (Albawaba.com)
© 2003 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)