Another front? Nasrallah
Photo: AFP

Report: Egypt to warn Israel of Hizbullah attack

Al-Hayat newspaper reports Turkey, Egypt plan to warn Israel ground operation in Gaza could lead to opening of northern front. Two countries discuss plan to reach truce

Turkey and Egypt plan to warn Israel that if a ground operation is launched in the Gaza Strip, Hizbullah might open another front in south Lebanon, Turkish sources told al-Hayat newspaper.


The report, published on Tuesday, said Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit visited Ankara on Monday and presented his Turkish counterpart Ali Babacan with a document detailing a four-point plan aimed at restoring order and ending the Israeli operation in Gaza.


The plan includes a ceasefire, the opening of Gaza crossings the removal of the blockade on the Strip, and the creation of regional and international guarantees that will keep the crossings open and the agreement honored.


According to the plan, if Turkey and Egypt work together, they can pressure and convince Israel and influence world opinion.


A source from the Turkish Foreign Ministry told al-Hayat there was a general understanding between the two nations on the Egyptian proposal.


Aboul Gheit said that Turkey had a proposition of its own, and there were still some points to be clarified regarding a truce and whether the Rafah crossing was included in the crossings the Egyptian document refers to.


Commentary: Will Nasrallah attack? 

Despite reports of a possible attack from the north, recent speeches by Hizbullah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah indicate he is not headed for war with Israel.


Since Israel launched its Operation Cast Lead in Gaza on Saturday, Nasrallah spoke out mainly against Egypt and almost completely avoided mentioning Israel.


It seems the Hizbullah leader will settle for mass rallies in support of Gaza and against Israel and the US, and a PR campaign against Egypt.


Lebanese sources said Hizbullah would not respond to Israel from Lebanese soil, and that the organization "has no interest in doing so".


Nonetheless, Lebanese security forces have increased their alert level ahead of any possible scenarios, including the possibility that Palestinian organizations in Lebanon may try to fire rockets at Israel.


The sources also stressed that "rebellious" bodies that may endanger Lebanon in this context were already "under tight supervision".


In his speech on Sunday, Nasrallah denied any knowledge of the eight rockets that were discovered last week in southern Lebanon and aimed at Israel. The Hizbullah head accused Israel of planting the rockets in order to frame Lebanon.


Stating that his organization was ready for any confrontation if Israel decided to act in Lebanon, Nasrallah's ton of voice indicated he was conveying more of a warning to Israel than an actual threat.


פרסום ראשון: 12.30.08, 11:26
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