BEIRUT/SIDON: The Israeli army said Friday it shelled a Hezbollah position in retaliation for a bomb that targeted their military unit on the border with Lebanon, further heightening tensions between the two.
The Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) claimed the bomb attack against what the Islamist group described as the "Zionist army unit" along the border with Lebanon.
"In response to the explosive device activated against IDF (Israeli army) soldiers, the IDF fired towards a Hezbollah terror infrastructure in southern Lebanon. A hit was confirmed," the army said in a statement, according to AFP.
Security sources told The Daily Star that the Israeli army fired a number of shells into the outskirts of the Kfar Shouba Hills in response to a bomb that had targeted an Israeli unit near the border with Lebanon.
The Lebanese Army confirmed the incident, saying Israel fired nine mortars into Lebanese territory.
“Around 5:45 p.m. when a bomb targeted an Israeli [army] unit inside occupied territory, Israeli forces fired several mortar shells, including nine which fell on Lebanon's Bastra farms and Helta,” the Army said in a statement.
Reuters quoted the Israel Army as saying that an explosive device was detonated against Israeli soldiers patrolling the border.
Haaretz reported that an explosion occurred near Har Dov on the Lebanese-Israeli border, targeting an Israeli military unit and that the Israeli army was investigating the attack.
Some Israeli media said the explosion slightly wounded three soldiers.
A Lebanese security source said Israel's barrage of shells was aimed at preventing "a possible infiltration," which might have been planned to follow after the bomb.
The incident came a week after the Israeli army said it struck two Hezbollah fighters as they were planting a bomb near the Israeli-Syrian border in the Golan Heights, which was widely believed to be in response to Israel’s aerial bombardment.
On Feb. 24, Israeli planes bombed a Hezbollah stronghold on Lebanon’s eastern border with Syria, apparently targeting a weapons shipment to the group.
Hezbollah vowed to retaliate to Israeli’s air raid, saying: “The resistance will choose the right time and place as well as the appropriate response method.”