UNITED STATES, WASHINGTON (OBSERVATORY) — Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah vowed on Sunday to respond to Israel’s offensive in Lebanon “at all costs”, hours after another drone crashed in Beirut’s southern suburbs.
“What happened last night was a suicide bomber attack on a target in the southern suburbs of Beirut,” Nasrallah said in a speech to thousands of supporters during a party celebration in eastern Lebanon.
“We will not allow such a route at any cost, and we will do everything to prevent it,” he said, vowing that “the time has come when Israeli planes are bombed somewhere in Lebanon and the usurper entity in Palestine remains safe in any area.”
“I tell the Israeli army on the border, from tonight, stand near the wall … We waited for a day, two, three, four,” he said, adding that “what happened last night will not pass … We are facing a dangerous stage.”
“Do not live, do not rest, do not rest assured, and do not bet for a moment that Hezbollah will allow such a course and aggression,” Nasrallah said.
He described what happened as “the first major and clear violation of the rules of engagement established after the July 2006 war,” which ended with the adoption of resolution 1701, which established a cessation of hostilities between Lebanon and Israel and boosted the deployment of UN forces in southern Lebanon.
“This breach, if silenced, will establish a very dangerous course on Lebanon,” he said. “We will not allow the clock to be turned back and that Lebanon will become permissible.”
Nasrallah threatened that “from now on, we will confront the Israeli marches in the skies of Lebanon and work to bring them down.”
Lebanon and Israel are technically still at war.
Since its inception, Hezbollah has been known to face the Israeli occupation. He is seen as the spearhead of Israel’s withdrawal from southern Lebanon in 2000 after 22 years of occupation.
The July 2006 war erupted after the party abducted two Israeli soldiers on 12 July 2006. Israel responded with a devastating attack. It did not succeed in achieving its stated goal of eliminating Hizbullah, which demonstrated the latter at the end of the war internally at the victorious position.
Hezbollah, backed by Iran, is a key player in Lebanon’s political arena. He has been fighting in Syria alongside regime forces openly since 2013.
The drones landed in a Hezbollah stronghold early Sunday, hours after Israel announced it had launched strikes in Syria, which it said had targeted “a number of terrorist targets and military installations of the Quds Force (Iranian) and Shiite militias” in the Aqraba area southeast of Damascus.
After Iran denied the Israeli accusations, Nasrallah announced in his speech on Sunday that the raids hit the headquarters of his fighters near Damascus, causing the death of two of them.
“The place where the bombardment is only Lebanese youths from Hezbollah,” he said. He explained that it is “a center … a house, not a military place, where young people rest.”
He vowed that “if Israel kills any of our brothers in Syria, we will respond to this killing.”
Nasrallah announced last month the reduction of his forces in Syria, after “the Syrian army has recovered significantly and found that he does not need us today,” speaking of “redeployment and repositioning.”
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