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Photo by: REUTERS/Ali Hashisho
'Hezbollah denies claims Israel attacked arms shipment from Syria'
By KHALED ABU TOAMEH
03/03/2014
Source close to Shi'ite group's leadership tells Kuwaiti daily A-Rai that goal of IAF strike was "to send a message."
 
Hezbollah is denying reports that Israel bombed an arms shipment from Syria into Lebanon last week.

While acknowledging that Israeli jets did launch the strike, a senior source close to the Shi'ite organization's leadership told the Kuwaiti daily newspaper A-Rai that the goal of the attack was to "send a message."

"We and the Israelis know that there wasn't any weapons transfer from Syria into Lebanon," the source told A-Rai. He said the strike caused light damage.

The source added that the region that was attacked, the village of Jarud Jonta, is located in a strategic area near the Syrian-Lebanese border. The village is a logistical point from where arms were smuggled between Syria and Lebanon.

The Hezbollah source added that Israel is treating wounded oppositionists in its field hospital on the Golan Heights because it doesn't want al-Qaida operatives and Islamist extremists near its border.

"So Israel is forced , from its standpoint, to create a buffer zone on its border so that those who want to be on the Israeli side could go there [for treatment]," the source said.

While it is heavily engaged in the Syrian conflict, Hezbollah "won't hesitate" to take on Israel militarily if the need arises, the source said.

"Hezbollah has a few thousand officers in Syria, but Hezbollah won't hesitate to open up a hostile front against Israel despite its massive presence in Syria," he said.

"The presence of Hezbollah operatives in Syria won't impact its readiness [for war] in Lebanon against Israel."
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