Lebanese PM Denounces Israeli Drones as ‘Threat to Regional Stability’

Published August 25th, 2019 - 11:52 GMT
Forensic investigators of Lebanon's military intelligence inspecting the scene where two drones came down in the vicinity of a media centre of the Shiite Hezbollah movement earlier in the day in the south of the capital Beirut. (AFP/ File Photo)
Forensic investigators of Lebanon's military intelligence inspecting the scene where two drones came down in the vicinity of a media centre of the Shiite Hezbollah movement earlier in the day in the south of the capital Beirut. (AFP/ File Photo)

Lebanon’s Prime Minister Saad Hariri has denounced a recent Israeli drone attack as a “threat to regional stability”, saying the incursion is meant to fuel tensions.

Speaking on Sunday, Hariri said that the incident was an open attack on Lebanon’s sovereignty and a blatant violation of United Nations Resolution 1701.

The Lebanese army said on Sunday that two Israeli drones had crashed in a stronghold of the Hezbollah resistance movement in the south of the capital, Beirut.

“Two drones belonging to the Israeli enemy violated Lebanese airspace (at dawn)... over the southern suburbs of Beirut. The first fell while the second exploded in the air causing material damage,” it said in a statement.

The Lebanese army also said that it had sealed off the area and that military police had opened an investigation into the incident.

Meanwhile, Hezbollah spokesman Mohammed Afif said that the first drone had fallen on a building housing Hezbollah’s media office in the Moawwad neighborhood of Beirut’s Dahieh suburb.

The second drone, which appeared to have been sent by Israel to search for the first one, had crashed in an empty plot nearby after being detonated in the air, he added.

“The first drone fell without causing damage while the second one was laden with explosives and exploded causing huge damage to the media center,” Afif told the National News Agency.

He said Hezbollah “did not shoot down or explode any of the drones,” adding that the first drone is now in possession of the resistance group.

The spokesman also pointed out that Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah will give an “appropriate” response in a televised appearance later on Sunday.


Hamas condemns drone incursion, too

The Palestinian Hamas resistance movement also denounced the “blatant” Israeli aggression on Beirut’s Dahieh, voicing support for Hezbollah.

The incursion came just hours after Israeli forces attempted to hit targets in Damascus in neighboring Syria. The Syrian military said the attacks were unsuccessful and that its air defense systems had intercepted the Israeli missiles.

The Israeli regime said the attacks had inflicted damage on targets related to Iran and allied groups, an apparent reference to Lebanon’s Hezbollah.

Hezbollah has been assisting the Syrian government in its years-long fight against terrorism in the Arab country.

However, it has denied claims it is fighting for Iran in Syria, saying the mission is meant to prevent a spillover of militancy into Lebanon.

The Tel Aviv regime has been cautious over the past years in its military encounters with Hezbollah, a group which seeks a total eviction of Israel from the occupied Palestinian territories.

It was not also clear whether Hezbollah’s downing of the Israeli drones was a swift attempt to respond to Israeli attacks in southern Damascus late on Saturday.

Hezbollah has previously accused Israel of supporting terrorist groups fighting against the Syrian government.

The Lebanese group has provided evidences suggesting that the regime in occupied Palestinian territories have transferred weapons to strongholds of terrorists in Syria.  

This article has been adapted from its original source.


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