Lebanon | Israeli strikes on Hezbollah strongholds

(Beirut) Israeli strikes targeted Hezbollah strongholds in eastern Lebanon on Tuesday, one of the deepest raids since the violence began nearly six months ago, state media reported and a source of security.

According to the National Information Agency (ANI, official), “an Israeli drone” targeted a locality near the town of Baalbeck, in the Bekaa plain, early in the evening.

An AFP correspondent on site saw a building belonging to the pro-Iranian Hezbollah in flames and two people evacuated by rescuers, while several ambulances were heading to the scene.

Shortly before, an Israeli strike had targeted the Hermel region, further north in the same plain, nearly 130 kilometers from the border with Israel.

The Israeli army said in a statement that it had “targeted a landing area and several military structures in a compound belonging to the Hezbollah air unit” in this region.

The powerful Lebanese Islamist movement Hezbollah frequently uses drones in the attacks it launches from Lebanon on Israel to support its ally, the Palestinian Hamas, since the start of the war in the Gaza Strip.

ANI reported “an Israeli strike on the Wadi Faara region”, near the town of Hermel, where explosions were heard.

A security source confirmed to AFP strikes on an arid and uninhabited area, where the pro-Iranian Hezbollah has positions, around thirty kilometers from the Syrian border.

The Lebanese army and Hezbollah blocked access to the area, according to an AFP correspondent.

The governor of the region, Bachir Khodr, affirmed on X that he “had not been informed of any victims” in this first “Israeli raid”.

Fight back

Since the start of the war between Israel and Hamas on October 7, pro-Iranian Hezbollah has exchanged daily fire with Israel on the Israeli-Lebanese border.

Israel responds with bombings and raids that target ever deeper into Lebanese territory.

Since Saturday, a series of Israeli strikes have targeted the Bekaa plain, an area far from the fighting and considered a Hezbollah stronghold, leaving one dead.

Hezbollah claimed responsibility for several attacks on Israel on Tuesday, including one targeting the Meron military air control base in northern Israel using guided missiles, according to a statement.

The Israeli army indicated that the raid on the Hermel region was in response to this attack, and also announced that it had targeted objectives in southern Lebanon.

Hezbollah later announced that it had launched a volley of rockets at the Yarden military base in the occupied Golan Heights.

According to an AFP count, at least 328 people have been killed in Lebanon, most of them Hezbollah fighters and 57 civilians in nearly six months.

On Tuesday, Hezbollah and Palestinian Islamic Jihad, which also claims attacks against Israel from southern Lebanon, each announced the death of a fighter, without giving further details.

The incessant exchanges of fire have also displaced thousands of people in southern Lebanon, but also in northern Israel, where according to the army, ten soldiers and seven civilians were killed.

reference: www.lapresse.ca

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