'Israel still top priority for Hezbollah'

Al-Akhbar: Hezbollah continues its battles with “the enemy,” some of which are offensive in nature, and others defensive.

A Shi'ite cleric wearing military uniform with Hezbollah members. (photo credit: REUTERS)
A Shi'ite cleric wearing military uniform with Hezbollah members.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
A Lebanese newspaper close to Hezbollah said on Monday that “Israeli is still at the top of the party’s priorities” despite the war in Syria. This came within the context of the arrest by Israel last month of a Swedish Palestinian charged for spying for the terrorist group.
Hezbollah continues its engagement “against the enemy,” some of which is offensive in nature and some defensive, reported Al-Akhbar.
The suspect, Khalil Hizran, was arrested on July 21 after flying into Tel Aviv, and confessed under interrogation to working for Hezbollah, Israel's Shin Bet security service said after a gag order on the case was lifted.
According to a Shin Bet statement, Hizran planned to gather information on military sites in Israel, a mission it deemed "proof that Hezbollah is preparing for the next war with Israel and is marking out a 'target bank.'"
The accused spy’s wife denied the charges in comments to Al-Akhbar, and said they had left Lebanon in 1985 for Sweden and only returned recently for family visits.
“The enemy may have tallied an intelligence achievement in its confrontation with the Resistance,” but the delay in releasing the information “may have contributed to the transfer of the desired information to Hezbollah,” said the report.
During his interrogation, the suspect provided an account of how he was recruited by Hezbollah and subsequent cooperation with the Lebanese Shi’ite terrorist organization.
In 2009, according to Hizran’s testimony, he traveled with his wife and children to Lebanon, during which time he received an offer to meet with Hezbollah operatives and he agreed, the Shin Bet said.
During secret meetings with Hezbollah members, he was told the Lebanese terrorist organization was seeking to recruit Palestinians living in Europe who hold foreign passports and send them to Israel to gather intelligence for Hezbollah.

Yaakov Lappin and Reuters contributed to this report.