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Hizbullah 'settles score' with SLA families
Eight Lebanese family members, former SLA members, arrive at northern border next to Metula Thursday, request to enter Israel following Hizbullah threats to hurt them. Defense minister instructs IDF to grant them entry, but until now, only one allowed to cross border

Drama on the northern border: Eight family members fromLebanon, former members of the Southern Lebanese Army, arrived Thursday afternoon within 10 meters of the border next to Metula and requested IDF authorization to enter into Israel following Hizbullah threats to cause them physical harm. It turns out that this is a real phenomenon in which Hizbullah members threaten family members of former SLA members.

 

Defense Minister Amir Peretz instructed the IDF to grant the family members entry into Israel and ordered to offer them humanitarian aid, until their situation and the circumstances of their flight from Lebanon are examined. However, as of now, the eight have yet to gain entry into Israel.

 

An IDF force on the northern border reported the presence of the Lebanese refugees on the border to the commanders of the Northern Command and to the Kiryat Shmona police station. As of now, it has been decided that the issue will be handled only by the IDF. Some of the family members felt unwell because of the intense heat in the area, and residents of Metulla transferred bottles of cold water to them by way of the IDF.

 

Towards Thursday evening, one of the family members, who was severely wounded in his limbs and face 10 years ago when Hizbullah inserted explosives in his belongings, was brought into Israeli territory. This incident occurred while the man was collaborating with Israel.

 

A few days ago a 30 year-old Lebanese woman crossed the security fence in the Metula area along with her three children to reunite with

her husband, a former SLA member who left Lebanon with the IDF’s withdrawal from the country in May 2000. Following an IDF interrogation the woman spent a few hours at the Kiryat Shmona police station, where it was determined that she had no intention of carrying out an attack in Israel. The husband was eventually located and met with his family later that night.

 

It is estimated that families of former SLA members residing in south Lebanon have been subject to repeated threats of physical violence since the ceasefire came into effect. 

 

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