IDF troops fire into Lebanese territory

Soldiers spot "suspicious shadows" near border; marks change in army's policy.

idf lebanon great 298 (photo credit: AP [file])
idf lebanon great 298
(photo credit: AP [file])
In the first such incident since the August 14 cease-fire, IDF troops shot last week at "suspicious shadows" near the Lebanese border fence, the IDF confirmed Wednesday. While it was unclear whether the figures spotted near the border were people or simply wild boars, the incident marked a change in IDF policy regarding restraint by troops patrolling the sensitive border. Troops from the Haruv Battalion who were patrolling the fence last Thursday evening identified suspicious movement on the Lebanese side, and then fired into Lebanon. The following morning, soldiers from the Egoz anti-guerilla unit swept the area to ascertain that no irregular activity had taken place overnight. IDF sources told The Jerusalem Post that while the incident in itself might have been prompted by troops who mistook wild animals for humans, it signified an important change in IDF responses to activity on the Lebanese side of the border. In January, Lebanese soldiers shot at IDF troops working to dismantle explosive devices near Avivim. The troops were ordered not to shoot back, and the incident was peacefully resolved through UNIFIL interevention. A military source in the OC Northern Command said Israel would not tolerate any activity intended to disrupt Israeli sovereignity over its territory. The unnamed source said this would be the policy of the IDF from now on.