Navy fires on Lebanese fishing boat

Incident comes less than a week after northern border flare-up.

By ABE SELIG
August 8, 2010 19:40
2 minute read.
Illustrative photo

Fishing boat. (photo credit: Associated Press)

 
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An Israeli Navy vessel opened fire on a Lebanese fishing boat over the weekend, after the ship sailed into a restricted zone and ignored warnings to leave the area, the IDF Spokesman’s office confirmed on Sunday.

The army’s confirmation came after Lebanese Army reports of the incident surfaced over the weekend.

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“Early Saturday morning a Lebanese fishing boat left the permitted fishing area, and when the ship did not heed calls from the Israeli military to return to the permitted fishing area, shots were fired,” an IDF spokesperson told The Jerusalem Post on Sunday.

“There were no injuries in the incident,” the spokesperson added.

In response to the incident, the Lebanese army issued a statement in which it claimed that Israel “continues to violate UN Resolution 1701,” although no specifics were given.

While the incident was comparatively minor, it came less than a week after a flare-up on the northern border between the LAF and the IDF left an Israeli officer and three Lebanese soldiers dead.

A Lebanese journalist from a Hezbollah-affiliated newspaper was also killed during the incident, which began when the LAF opened fire on IDF soldiers who were carrying out a routine operation in the area that involved crossing the border fence – but not the border itself – between the two countries.



The IDF returned fired at LAF positions in southern Lebanon in response.

During the incident, which was the most serious escalation of tensions in the area since the 2006 Second Lebanon War, 45-year-old Lt. Col. (res.) Dov Harari, from Netanya, was killed by sniper fire directed at his position from southern Lebanon.

Another IDF officer sustained severe wounds during the ensuing clash, and is currently being treated at Rambam Medical Center in Haifa where he is listed in stable condition.

While members of the international community have urged restraint in the wake of the incident, no further escalations have occurred on the ground.

Nonetheless, the area remains tense, and Syrian and Iranian government officials have continued to make official pledges of “defense” for Lebanon in face of “Israeli aggression.”

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