TEL AVIV – Via Arab countries, Israel has reportedly warned Lebanon-based, Iran-backed terror group Hezbollah that it would respond forcefully if attacked from Syria or Lebanon, the London-based Al Hayat newspaper reported on Sunday.
As Breitbart Jerusalem reported last week citing Lebanese publications, Hezbollah is said to be stronger than ever before and has been boosting its military muscle both at home and in neighboring Syria. The latest report from Al Hayat claims that Israel is concerned the terror group will leverage its position in Syria to attack it and has sent a warning to the organization.
On Thursday, Hezbollah Chief Hassan Nasrallah threatened to strike an ammonia plant in the northern Israeli city of Haifa, an attack he says would be akin to a nuclear bomb explosion. He also threatened Hezbollah missiles can strike Israel’s nuclear reactor in Dimona.
The report also said Arab countries believe the Trump administration is working with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to recruit Middle East nations against Hezbollah.
The Arab world has advised the terror group to proceed with extreme caution, but its counsel was rejected by Nasrallah, who on Thursday said, “[Donald] Trump’s election does not scare us, even if claims that he will give Netanyahu the green light to wage a war on Lebanon turn out to be true.”
He added, “The leaders of Israel understand that the resistance [Hezbollah] has the ability to cover the entirety of occupied Palestine with missiles. We must keep this capability because it acts as a deterrent for the Third Lebanon War.”
According to an editorial in pro-Hezbollah daily Al-Akhbar, the terror group’s involvement in the Syrian civil war has allowed “a vast supply of advanced, state-of-the art weapons of various kinds, including weapons provided by Iran, to flow into Hezbollah’s depots.”
Hezbollah has also been able to maintain close ties with the military wing of Gaza-based terror group Hamas, the report said.
Lebanese President Michel Aoun, who was briefed by several Arab leaders about the growing ties between Israel and the U.S., said on Egyptian TV that Hezbollah’s weapons “are an essential part of defending Lebanon.
“As long as the Lebanese army lacks sufficient power to face Israel, we feel the need for [Hezbollah’s] arsenal because it complements the army’s role.”
Israel’s Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon condemned Aoun’s comments in a letter to UN Secretary-General António Guterres and the Security Council.
Aoun said Saturday that the Israeli envoy’s letter “constitutes a threat to Lebanon. The international community should be wary of Israel’s aggressive intentions against Lebanon” and added that any attacks on Lebanon, diplomatic or military, would be met with the “appropriate response.”