In his address to the United Nations on Tuesday, Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu exposed a secret arms depot belonging to the Iranian-backed Hezbollah in a residential area near Beirut’s International Airport, warning of another devastating explosion and calling on the Lebanese people to protest against the terror group.
“We all saw the terrible explosion at Beirut port last month,” he said, referring to August 4’s catastrophic blast when a warehouse with close to 3,000 tons of ammonium nitrate exploded, wiping out large swaths of the city.
“This is the Beirut port. Two hundred people died, thousands of people were injured, and a quarter of a million people were made homeless,” he said, pointing to a map.
“Now, here is where the next explosion could take place. Right here. This is the Beirut neighborhood of Janah. It’s right next to the international airport. And here, Hezbollah is keeping a secret arms depot,” he said, and noted its proximity to a gas company.
“And it’s embedded in civilian housing here, civilian housing here,” he said, referring to the map.
He showed images of the facility, which he said was a Hezbollah missile factory.
“I say to the people of Janah, you’ve got to act now. You’ve got to protest this. Because if this thing explodes, it’s another tragedy,” Netanyahu said.
“I say to the people of Lebanon, Israel means you no harm. But Iran does. Iran and Hezbollah have deliberately put you and your families in grave danger. And what you should make clear is that what they have done is unacceptable. You should tell them, tear these depots down.”
He pointed to a blast last week in southern Lebanon, in which a Hezbollah weapons depot exploded.
“The international community must insist that Hezbollah stop using Lebanon and Lebanese civilians as human shields,” he said.
Hezbollah's sickening and deliberate use of civilians as human shields on full display — PM Netanyahu reveals secret Hezbollah missile depot inside a residential neighborhood in Beirut just meters from a gas station.
— Aaron Klein (@AaronKleinShow) September 29, 2020
The Israel Defense Forces later released information on two additional weapons sites in Beirut, both underground missile production facilities located under large residential complexes.
Netanyahu went on to praise President Donald Trump for standing up to Iran.
“First and foremost, I commend President Trump for withdrawing from the flawed nuclear deal with Iran,” he said.
“[T]he nuclear deal did not block Iran’s path to the bomb, it actually paved its way to it,” he said, adding that “the deal’s restrictions on Iran’s nuclear program were only temporary and were no way tied to Iran’s change of behavior.”
“There is no question that Iran is seeking nuclear weapons,” he said.
“The once secret nuclear archive, Israel’s agents obtained from the heart of Tehran, proves that beyond a shadow of a doubt,” the prime minister continued, referring to Israel’s May 2018 raid on a Tehran warehouse in which Mossad operatives spirited half a ton of secret documents on Iran’s nuclear program out the country.
He slammed the U.N. Security Council for doing “absolutely nothing” in the face of Iran’s violations of the nuclear deal.
“Rather than curb Iran’s aggression, the nuclear deal fed and funded it,” he said.
“Thankfully, President Trump recognized the disastrous nuclear deal for what it was and he acted. He restored US sanctions, forced countries to choose between doing business with America or doing business with Iran, and took out the world’s most dangerous terrorist, Qassem Suleimani,” the Israeli premier said.
He went on to note the U.S. snap back sanctions last month after the Security Council refused to extend an arms embargo.