Defense Minister Yoav Gallant met on Monday night with the UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres at the UN headquarters in New York and warned of a looming escalation on Israel’s northern border.
Hezbollah is a proxy of Iran, and today fields a military force comparable to many national militaries in the region, including that of its host nation, Lebanon. Iran has been increasing its funding and logistical support to Hezbollah and Palestinian terror groups like Hamas in recent years in an effort to destabilize the region and weaken Israel.
Gallant told the UN head that “the possibility of escalation on the northern border is increasing, following Hezbollah’s actions that violate Israel’s sovereignty.” He was referring to recent incidents in which Hezbollah fighters and affiliated journalists and Lebanese lawmakers came to the border and provoked Israeli soldiers. Hezbollah also crossed the UN-recognized armistice line and established a small outpost inside what is Israeli-controlled territory.
Israel, stressed Gallant, insists on immediate intervention of the United Nations to reduce tensions by strengthening the freedom of movement of UNIFIL forces in the region, and implementing their mandate on the northern border. To drive the point home, he presented the UN Secretary General with details regarding the deployment of Hezbollah forces along the border, and clarified that the State of Israel will act against any violation of sovereignty and threat to the lives of its citizens.
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