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Lebanon says an Israeli drone caused a fire in a border area

UNITED STATES, WASHINGTON (OBSERVATORY) — Lebanon said on Sunday that an Israeli drone violated its airspace, firing “incendiary materials” that caused a fire on the Lebanese side of the border, amid mounting tension between the two countries.

“An Israeli enemy drone violated Lebanese airspace over a farm in Bastara,” the army command said in a statement.

“They threw incendiary materials at the oak forest in the area, which led to a fire.”

An Israeli army spokeswoman said the blaze near the border between the two countries was caused by army “operations” in the area.

“Fires erupted recently near the Blue Line between Israel and Lebanon and these fires were the result of IDF operations in the area,” she told AFP, without giving further details.

The incident comes amid mounting tensions between the two, days after Lebanon accused Israel of targeting Hezbollah in the southern suburbs of Beirut with drones carrying explosives last week.

On Saturday, Hezbollah Secretary General Hassan Nasrallah said his party’s response to the attack by the two drones was “a foregone conclusion.”

“The need for a response is a definitive matter,” he said in a televised speech during a religious ceremony in the southern suburb of Beirut, his stronghold in Beirut.

“The Israeli should pay the price for his attack.”

Nasrallah had vowed to retaliate “at all costs” and target Israeli marches, which often fly in Lebanese airspace.

In a rare incident on Wednesday, the Lebanese army fired at two of three Israeli reconnaissance planes that violated southern Lebanon, before turning back across the border.

On Saturday, Israel fired flare bombs on several areas near the border with Lebanon, one of which landed inside an Indian battalion of the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL), the Lebanese army and a UN spokesman said.

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