Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Hezbollah leader Nasrallah threatens: ‘No place’ would be safe during war with Israel, Cyprus could be struck

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Amid intensifying diplomatic efforts to find a solution to the situation on Israel’s northern border, Hezbollah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah threatened Israel and the island of Cyprus with war on Wednesday. The threat was made during an event commemorating senior Hezbollah commander Taleb Abdallah, who was killed by the IDF last week.

“Without a doubt our loss is great,” Nasrallah stated tearfully while eulogizing Abdallah, before launching into a tirade of threats and boasts against Israel.

“Israel knows that there will be no place in Israel that our missiles and drones won’t hit and it won’t be random. Israel knows that we have a real target bank and that we can reach all targets, in a way that will shake the foundations of the Zionist entity,” he said, using his usual epithet to refer to Israel.

He added that as far as Hezbollah was concerned, only a ceasefire in the war in Gaza would change the situation. Nasrallah also hinted Hezbollah would target Israeli oil rigs in the Mediterranean, and even threatened Cyprus, a member of the European Union.

“Opening Cypriot airports and bases to the Israeli enemy to target Lebanon would mean that the Cypriot government is part of the war, and the resistance will deal with it as part of the war,” he said.

Cyprus has conducted joint military exercises with Israel in the past. In response to Nasrallah’s threats, Cypriot President Nikos Christodoulides said his country “is in no way involved” in military operations in the region. He underscored that Nasrallah’s comments “don’t in any way reflect what’s being attempted, which is to present a picture that Cyprus is involved in military operations.”

Nasrallah also called the current war the “greatest campaign the Islamic nation has fought since 1948,” promising it would change the face of the region and its future.

On the Israeli side of the border, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant and IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Herzi Halevi conducted a joint situation assessment at the IDF’s Northern Command.

Halevi emphasized that the IDF was not content just waging a defense battle against the Hezbollah terrorists.

“We have many forces in the IDF focused on attacking Hezbollah. Even today, we have already killed several of their operatives. Yesterday, Hezbollah released a video showcasing a capability we are familiar with, and we are preparing and building solutions to counter such capabilities and others that you will encounter when needed,” Halevi said in response to drone footage Hezbollah published on Wednesday.

“We, of course, possess powerful capabilities, of which the enemy knows only a fraction and will encounter them at the right time,” Halevi stated.

Continuing recent threats that Israel is getting closer to declaring war in the north, Gallant said, “We have an obligation to change the situation in the north and return the citizens safely to their homes, even if we have to fight on a different scale.”

On Wednesday, Hezbollah forces launched three drones into Israeli territory, with one crashing near the northern town of Metula, one shot down near Sde Eliezer, and a third intercepted over Lebanese territory.

In addition, Hezbollah fired a salvo of 15 rockets at Kiryat Shmona, which were either intercepted or fell in open areas. The IDF said it shelled the launch area with artillery in response.

On Thursday, the army said Israeli aircraft attacked a military structure near the city of Tyre and another terror post near the town of al-Khiyam. Later, Israeli Air Forces (IAF) fighter jets struck a launch sitenear Aita al-Sha’ab and two other military buildings in al-Adaisa and Aita al-Sha’ab.

In the afternoon, the IDF announced it had eliminated Fadel Ibrahim, a regional operations commander responsible for planning and carrying out terror attacks in Israel while also commanding infantry units of Hezbollah.

In addition, IAF fighter jets struck a surface-to-air missile launcher in the Rihan area, which endangered Israeli aircraft.

“The Air Force will continue to work to implement IDF missions in the airspace in Lebanon while expanding the freedom of action in the airspace,” the IDF stated.

“The situation that existed on the Israel-Lebanon border on October 7 will not return,” IDF Arabic Spokesman Lt.-Col. Avichay Adraee told the American Arabic-language news channel al-Hurra on Wednesday.

“This is being enacted these days through the attacks of the IDF and by harming [Hezbollah’s] operatives, its terrorist squads and its interests.”

“To realize this goal, there are several scenarios: Military action, limited or extensive military action – or all-out war,” Adraee stressed.

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