Israel's Air Force bombed a terror target in Lebanon
early on Friday in retaliation for a cross-border rocket salvo
on Thursday, the IDF
spokesman said. The aircraft carried out a direct hit.
The terror site bombed was near Na'ameh, between Beirut and Sidon.
will not tolerate terrorist aggression originating from Lebanese territory," military spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Peter Lerner said in a statement announcing Friday's air strike.
|Iron Dome intercepts rocket|
Military sources said that the target was a group of tunnels that may have served as rocket launching pads but that do not belong to Hezbollah.
Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon held a situation assessment meeting with IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz Friday following the rocket salvo on the Galilee.
"The State of Israel is holding the Lebanese government accountable for what is going on in its territory and will not sit by with every firing or provocation. We will not let anyone disrupt our citizens' lives," he said.
Hezbollah's Al-Manar TV reported that the IDF targeted a base belonging to a Palestinian organization in Naameh in south Lebanon. According to the report, there were no injuries and minor damage was caused to the site.
Ramez Mustafa, a Lebanon-based official with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command said the group will respond "in the right place and the right time."
Reported site of Israeli attack in Lebanon
He said that the Abdullah Azzam Brigades, an al-Qaeda-inspired group based in Lebanon who claimed responsibility for the attack, were not at the site of the attack.
Internal Security Minister Yitzhak Aharonovich sent a message to the Lebanese government and global jihad terrorists on Friday. "If this continues, our response will be much tougher," he said during a visit to Kibbutz Gesher Haziv which sustained a hit in Thursday's attack. "Yesterday we were lucky, tomorrow we might not be."
Her further stated, "The Israeli government will not allow the harming of innocent civilians. The message is clear, anyone who attempts to hurt Israeli citizens will be harmed. There will be a response and if they continue, it will be much tougher."
The minister said that the Air Force's strike in Lebanon had achieved its goal. "The question is whether they continue. We know we hit our targets and they know we can raise the bar. I hope this doesn't happen again."
Lebanese President Michel Suleiman condemned the IDF strike. "UNIFIL must handle breaches in the border area. We oppose Israel's aggression and violation of Lebanese sovereignty," he said.
Suleiman asked Foreign Minister Adnan Mansour to submit an urgent complaint to the UN's Security Council against Israel. On Thursday, the president condemned the firing of rockets at Israel and said the firing undermines Lebanon sovereignty.
On Thursday, IDF Chief of Staff Benny Gantz
held a situation assessment meeting with top military officers following the rocket fire from Lebanon. It is estimated that global jihad terrorists fired the rockets, but the army is pointing a finger at Lebanon.
Iron Dome battery in Galilee (Photo: George Ginsburg)
On Thursday afternoon, two air raid sirens sounded in the western Galilee after four katyusha rockets were fired at Israel from Lebanon. Sirens sounded, among other places, in Nahariya and Akko where alarms were not heard since the Second Lebanon War.
Rocket hit (Photo: Libby Hornick)
Two rockets exploded in residential areas and a recently-deployed Iron Dome battery intercepted at least one rocket. Three people suffered from shock. One 14-year-old girl sustained a light head wound from falling while running for shelter.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
addressed rocket fire from Lebanon in the direction of Israel's Western Galilee, saying "We are working on all fronts," the prime minister added; "in the north and in the south, so as to protect the citizens of Israel from these attacks."
Netanyahu stressed that the State was "utilizing various means, in both defense and prevention, and acting responsibly. Our policy is clear – to defend as well as to thwart. Anyone who harms us should know and anyone who tries to harm us should know we will harm them back."
Reuters and Ahiya Raved contributed to this report
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