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Lebanon flays Israeli military escalation at border

Lebanon flays Israeli military escalation at border

Beirut: Lebanon has condemned Israeli military escalation at the border, while stressing that it was committed to the resolution of the UN Security Council (UNSC), according to a Xinhua report.

In a statement, Lebanese Prime Minister Tammam Salam said: "The Israeli escalation on the border...after the Shebaa operation might pave the way for dangerous possibilities that do not serve peace and stability in the region."

He added: "Lebanon is committed to (UNSC) Resolution 1701, and it lauds the efforts of the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) peacekeepers, who lost a member of the Spanish contingent."

The UNSC adopted Resolution 1701 in 2006, calling for a full cessation of hostilities in the month-long war between Israel and Hezbollah, while mapping out a formula for the phased withdrawal of the Israel Defence Forces from southern Lebanon.

"Lebanon urges the international community to rein in the hostile intentions of Israel, which is gambling with the security and stability of the region", Salam said, stressing, "Lebanon stands united behind the legitimate armed forces that are tasked with defending its land, security, and people."

According to the statement, Salam called UNIFIL chief in south Lebanon, Luciano Portolano, and offered his condolences on the death of a member of the Spanish brigade during Israel's retaliatory shelling of south Lebanon.

Two Israeli soldiers were killed and seven wounded Wednesday in a Hezbollah attack on a military convoy in the occupied Shebaa Farms, at the intersection of the Lebanese-Syrian border and the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights.

Hezbollah claimed responsibility for the attack, which targeted several vehicles transporting officers and soldiers with missiles, to avenge the Israeli raid on Syria's Qoneitra city that killed six of its fighters and a top Iranian general.

The Hezbollah attack prompted Israel to shell areas in southern Lebanon in a significant escalation along the volatile border.

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