South Lebanon Hit by Gunfire from Israeli-Occupied Shabaa Farms
Automatic weapons fire from the Israel-occupied Shabaa Farms border area on Sunday hit south Lebanon, where Israeli warplanes were making airborne incursions, an AFP correspondent reported.
No one was wounded in the incident near the Lebanese villages of Kfarshuba and the Israeli-occupied Shabaa, the correspondent said.
Israeli forces along the border between the two countries were placed on high alert on Thursday amid fears of an attack by the Lebanese Hizbollah resistance movement.
An AFP correspondent reported seeing Israeli infantry, supported by mobile surface-to-surface missile launchers, patrolling the border.
On Thursday, Hizbollah said it fired on Israeli warplanes four times over southern Lebanon.
A Lebanese security source said that Israel’s repeated warnings of imminent Hizbollah attacks were helping to create a climate of tension along the border with Lebanon.
In the past few days, Israel has issued a flurry of predictions that the Shiite resistance group was about to stage a “spectacular” operation against Israeli forces.
The warnings carried by the Israeli media have included a wide array of potential assaults by Hizbollah, such as rocket strikes in the occupied Shabaa Farms, storming a border outpost, attacks via the flashpoint village of Ghajar and abductions of civilians or soldiers.
Israel has reportedly sent messages to Syria via the United States warning of a harsh response to any attack by Hizbollah, which harried the Jewish state's occupation army until it withdrew from south Lebanon in May 2000.
But security sources and diplomats in Beirut were quoted by the Daily Star as believing that the warnings had less to do with hard intelligence received by the Israelis of impending Hizbollah operations, and more to do with two months having passed since the last attack in the Shabaa Farms.
“They are drumming into our heads every conceivable threat they can come up with,” a senior security source said.
“In case something goes wrong, they’ll be able to say ‘we told you so’,” the source told the paper.
According to the paper, Israel’s assassination of Abu Ali Mustapha, the head of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, earlier this week in the West Bank has aroused speculation that Hizbollah may permit a “revenge” operation by the PFLP along the border, said the paper – Albawaba.com
© 2001 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)