Hezbollah's coordinated attack on Israel raises concerns of potential escalation in wartext_fields
Tensions between Israel and Hezbollah escalated on Thursday as the Iran-backed militant group launched a coordinated attack on 19 Israeli positions along the border with the assault, involving guided missiles, artillery shelling, and other weapons.
In the retaliatory response, Israel claimed that it targeted warplanes and helicopters in Hezbollah positions.
The Israeli town of Kiryat Shmona near the Lebanese border suffered another barrage of rockets, resulting in two injuries, according to Israel's Magen David Adom emergency medical service.
The Lebanese section of Hamas's armed wing claimed responsibility for firing a dozen rockets at the town, citing retaliation for what they deemed "occupation massacres against our people in Gaza."
This latest exchange is part of an ongoing series of tit-for-tat skirmishes between the Israeli army and Hezbollah, particularly since the outbreak of the conflict. The war has claimed over 9,000 Palestinian lives in Gaza and more than 1,400 in Israel, with tensions further heightened by Hezbollah's ally, Hamas.
The situation remains highly volatile, with Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah scheduled to deliver a speech on Friday—the first since the conflict erupted. Many in Lebanon anxiously await his address, viewing it as a potential signal for the chances of escalation.
Nasrallah, a key figure in the "Axis of Resistance," is expected to address not only the local audience but also garner attention internationally, given the alliance's objective to counter the influence of the United States and Israel.
French Defense Minister Sebastien Lecornu, during a visit to UNIFIL, emphasized that Lebanon does not need a war with Israel, expressing concerns about potential escalations in the region. The White House also expressed concern about Hezbollah's attacks on Israeli forces but stated that there is currently no indication that Hezbollah is ready to fully engage.
Against this backdrop, Hezbollah claimed to have downed an Israeli drone with a surface-to-air missile, adding to the complexities of the situation. Meanwhile, Lebanon's army recovered the bodies of two shepherds killed by Israeli fire, bringing the death toll on the Lebanese side to 66 since the start of the conflict.