Lebanon says Israeli warplanes violated its airspace

Lebanese army says IAF jets carried out repeated overflights.

By REUTERS
January 30, 2013 12:54
IAF plane takes part in maneuvers [file]

IDF jet 311. (photo credit: IDF spokesperson)

 
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BEIRUT - Lebanon said Wednesday that Israel Air Force jets entered its territory overnight, part of apparently increased air activitythat comes as Israel has repeatedly expressed concern about chemical weapons in neighboring Syria falling out of government control.

A Lebanese army statement said that four IAF warplanes entered Lebanese air space at 4.30 p.m on Tuesday. They were replaced four hours later by another group of planes which overflew southern Lebanon until 2 a.m and a third mission took over, finally leaving at 7.55 a.m on Wednesday morning.

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Lebanon frequently complains that Israeli jets overfly its territory. However the recent activity was much more concentrated than usual.

There was no explanation for the operations in the region, bordering southern Syria. The statement made no mention of planes entering Syrian airspace.

Israel's vice premier Silvan Shalom said on Sunday that any sign that Syria's grip on its chemical weapons is slipping, as President Bashar Assad fights rebels trying to overthrow him, could trigger Israeli military strikes.


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