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Lebanon News

Lebanese Army arrests two Palestinians over Israel attack

  • A Lebanese army soldier inspects a site where rockets were launched near Tyre, southern Lebanon July 14, 2014. (REUTERS/Haidar Hawila)

SIDON, Lebanon: The Lebanese Army Wednesday found a launch pad in the Hinnieh valley, near the Rashidieh camp, that was used to fire rockets at Israel.

The discovery came after the Army arrested two Palestinians involved in the rocket attacks, hours after a missile fired overnight fell short of its target and landed inside south Lebanon.

In a statement, the military said Army intelligence personnel apprehended Palestinian Khalil Kharraz and his brother Hussein, who confessed to transporting rockets to the launch site on July 13 and 14.

The detainees are being interrogated to identify any accomplices.

The suspects, who are brothers, had a vehicle without papers.

A security source told The Daily Star that security agencies are convinced the two men are connected to the launching of rockets at Israel. The source sid at least one of them is close to Hamas.

Last week, the Army arrested Hussein Izzat Atwe, who belongs to Al-Jamaa al-Islamiya and confessed to firing rockets at Israel from the Hasbaya village of Mari last Friday.

Atwe has reportedly said that his move was in retaliation for Israel’s aggression on Gaza.

A security source told The Daily Star that two rockets were fired from the Khreibeh area in the Arkoub region at 1 a.m., with one landing in Wadi Qais near the southern border village of Khiam.

Security forces could not determine where the other rocket had landed, the source added.

Unidentified militants have launched salvoes of rockets from Lebanese territory toward Israel for the past five days, prompting Israeli retaliatory shelling of Lebanese villages late Monday night.

The Lebanese Army along with the U.N. interim Force in Lebanon have beefed up their presence and patrols to prevent a possible escalation on the border, which has been relatively calm since 2006.

U.N. Special Coordinator Derek Plumbly Tuesday condemned both the rocket attacks on Israel and the Israeli retaliatory action, saying UNIFIL had launched an probe in coordination with the Lebanese Army to prevent their recurrence.

“These are clear violations of Resolution 1701 and pose a serious threat to the calm which has prevailed in the area, and to stability more generally,” Plumbly said. He called on parties “to exercise restraint and to cooperate with UNIFIL in implementation of Resolution 1701 to prevent their recurrence and any escalation.”

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on July 17, 2014, on page 3.
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Summary

The Lebanese Army Wednesday found a launch pad in the Hinnieh valley, near the Rashidieh camp, that was used to fire rockets at Israel.

Last week, the Army arrested Hussein Izzat Atwe, who belongs to Al-Jamaa al-Islamiya and confessed to firing rockets at Israel from the Hasbaya village of Mari last Friday.

Unidentified militants have launched salvoes of rockets from Lebanese territory toward Israel for the past five days, prompting Israeli retaliatory shelling of Lebanese villages late Monday night.

U.N. Special Coordinator Derek Plumbly Tuesday condemned both the rocket attacks on Israel and the Israeli retaliatory action, saying UNIFIL had launched an probe in coordination with the Lebanese Army to prevent their recurrence.


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