Hezbollah fighters among seven dead in Israeli strikes on Lebanon

Hezbollah fighters among seven dead in Israeli strikes on Lebanon
Hezbollah fighters among seven dead in Israeli strikes on Lebanon

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Nevin Al Sukari - Sana'a - Smoke billows over the southern Lebanese village of Khiam near the border with Israel, following an Israeli airstrike. — AFP pic

BEIRUT, May 27 — Five fighters and two civilians were killed yesterday in Israeli strikes in Lebanon, official media and Hezbollah said, as Israel’s military said it targeted the Iran-backed group which claimed retaliatory attacks.

Hezbollah, a Hamas ally, has traded regular cross-border fire with Israel since the Palestinian militant group’s October 7 attack on southern Israel which triggered war in the Gaza Strip.

Israeli military spokesman Daniel Hagari told a televised briefing that the military “eliminated... seven Hezbollah terrorists in a number of air attacks” in south Lebanon.

Lebanon’s official National News Agency (NNA) reported Israeli strikes targeted motorbikes in three different south Lebanon border villages, with two people dead in Hula, two “civilians” killed in Aita al-Shaab, and unspecified casualties in Naqura on the coast.

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It also reported Israeli strikes on other areas of south Lebanon, and fires in several locations due to bombardments, including a blaze it said was caused by incendiary phosphorus rounds.

Hezbollah in separate statements announced five fighters had been killed, while a source close to the group told AFP that one of them was killed in Naqura.

The powerful Shiite Muslim movement claimed at least 14 attacks on Israeli troops and positions on Sunday, including barrages of “dozens” of rockets, some in stated retaliation for strikes on villages in south Lebanon.

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The Israeli army said earlier Sunday in a statement that “a Hezbollah terrorist was identified exiting a military structure” in the Naqura area, adding that “an aircraft struck and eliminated” the operative.

It also said the army struck “two Hezbollah terrorists who were identified operating” in the Aita al-Shaab area.

Israel’s Magen David Adom emergency medical service said it treated a “40-year-old male with light blast injuries” after warning sirens sounded in the Kiryat Shmona area in the country’s north.

In recent weeks Hezbollah has stepped up its cross-border attacks, which it says are in support of Gazans and its ally Hamas, while Israel has struck deeper into Lebanese territory.

The violence has killed at least 440 people in Lebanon, mostly militants but also including 84 civilians, according to an AFP tally.

Israel says 14 soldiers and 11 civilians have been killed on its side of the border. — AFP

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