BEIRUT (Reuters) – Hezbollah’s leader said on Friday that Lebanon would be “exposed” to more Israeli operations if his powerful Lebanese armed group did not respond to the assassination of Hamas’ deputy leader on the outskirts of Beirut.
Saleh al-Arouri was killed in a drone strike on a southern Beirut suburb on Tuesday, which some analysts said could also be seen as a message to Hezbollah that its strongholds were vulnerable to attack.
Delivering a televised speech for the second time in less than a week after nearly two months without doing so, Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah said the group “cannot remain silent in the face of a violation of this level” .
“This means that all of Lebanon will be exposed, all cities, villages and personalities will be exposed,” he said.
Hezbollah launched rockets across the border on October 8 in support of Hamas, a day after Hamas gunmen carried out the deadly attack on southern Israel that triggered the Israeli military offensive in the strip. from Gaza.
Nasrallah said Hezbollah had since carried out some 670 operations on the Lebanese-Israeli border, destroying a “large number” of Israeli military vehicles and tanks.
He also said that if the Israeli army succeeded in achieving its military objectives in Gaza, it would then turn to Lebanon.
He warned Israel on Wednesday against expanding its war, saying there would be “no ceiling” or “no rules” to his group’s fighting if Israel chose to launch a war in Lebanon.
“Anyone who thinks about war with us, in a word, will regret it,” Nasrallah said.
(Reporting by Maya Gebeily and Riham Alkoussa, writing by Ahmed Elimam; editing by Alex Richardson and Timothy Heritage)
Copyright 2024 Thomson Reuters.