Armed Hezbollah terrorists were recently spotted patrolling the border between Lebanon and Israel in clear violation of a legally binding U.N. resolution, the Israel Defense Forces confirmed to local media on Tuesday.
In a video filmed by IDF troops stationed near the northern town of Dovev, multiple masked gunmen can be seen observing Israeli territory from behind the border fence. The incident reportedly took place last week, and video footage surfaced on Tuesday.
The military noted the Hezbollah operatives did not cross the Blue Line, a U.N.-recognized delineation marking Israel’s withdrawal from Lebanon in 2000, and were kept under strict surveillance the entire time.
However, according to U.N. Security Council Resolution 1701, which was passed after the 2006 war between Israel and Hezbollah and ratified by both Beirut and Jerusalem, Hezbollah is forbidden from operating anywhere near the frontier. The resolution also called for disarming the Iran-backed terror group.
Israeli Foreign Ministry Deputy Head of the Division for Strategic Affairs Tammy Rahamimoff-Honig commented on Twitter: “Hezbollah continues its provocations near the Israeli border. Armed & uniformed operatives patrol the border near civilian population centers. This is a clear violation of U.N. Security Council res. 1701 that prohibits armed forces south of the Litani River.”
The armed patrol was the latest in a series of provocations along the Jewish state’s northern frontier, most of them instigated by Hezbollah, which have raised tensions in recent months.
On March 15, a terrorist who infiltrated from Lebanon planted a roadside bomb in northern Israel that severely wounded a motorist. Shareef ad-Din, 21, from the Israeli Arab town of Salem, was wounded when the explosive device detonated behind a barrier by the side of the road near the Megiddo Junction, some 18 miles southeast of Haifa.
In early April, Hezbollah pitched two tents a few meters on the Israeli side of the Blue Line. The position, located across from an IDF post, was reportedly manned by three to eight armed terrorists. It was reported on July 2 that Hezbollah had removed one of the tents.
Israel’s Foreign Ministry revealed in May that Hezbollah has in the past year constructed no fewer than 27 military posts along the Blue Line. The posts were built under the guise of Green without Borders, a Hezbollah-affiliated organization that poses as an environmental NGO.
Earlier this month, the IDF foiled an attempt by Hezbollah to damage the border fence. Defense Minister Yoav Gallant said that Israeli troops “deterred Hezbollah activists with non-lethal means and will continue to guard the security of the State of Israel.”