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Citizens Seize Hezbollah Weaponry After Group Launches Rockets at Israel for 1st Time Since 2006

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Villagers in Lebanon attacked suspected Hezbollah militants and intercepted a truck carrying a rocket launcher on Friday afternoon after the group fired missiles toward Israel for the first time since 2006.

Rocket alert sirens wailed in parts of northern Israel at around 11:00 a.m., according to an Israeli missile warning system.

The Israel Defense Forces later announced that 19 rockets were fired from Lebanon, six of which hit open areas in Israel. The rest either landed in Lebanon after failing to cross the border or were intercepted by Israel’s missile defense system.

There were no reported casualties.

“We will not tolerate any aggression against Israeli civilians and remain prepared for any operational situation,” the IDF said.

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Following the attack, Israel began firing at the rocket launch sites in Lebanon. “We will not let attacks on Israeli civilians go unanswered,” the IDF tweeted.

The Iran-backed, Lebanon-based militant group Hezbollah claimed responsibility for the initial rocket fire, saying it was in response to Israeli airstrikes, Axios reported.

The U.S. and several other nations recognize Hezbollah as a terrorist group.

The United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon released a statement on Friday calling on all involved parties to “cease fire and maintain calm so we can begin an investigation.”

“This is a very dangerous situation, with escalatory actions seen on both sides over the past two days,” the UNIFIL said.

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Villagers in southern Lebanon were outraged that the Hezbollah militants had launched rockets near their homes. Several Lebanese men were seen hitting and dragging suspected operatives out of their community.

Videos showed villagers surrounding damaged vehicles, including a pickup truck from which the militants had fired rockets.

One villager was heard shouting, “Hezbollah is firing rockets from between homes so that Israel hits us back,” The Times of Israel reported.

Hezbollah confirmed that its operatives were intercepted by the villagers.

“The Islamic Resistance was and will always be most keen about the safety of its people and avoiding any harm to them through its acts of resistance,” the group said in a statement, according to the Times.

The Lebanese Army later arrived at the scene to seize the rocket launcher. Four Hezbollah militants were reportedly detained.

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Andrew Jose is a freelance reporter covering security, U.S. politics, and foreign policy, among other beats. He has bylines in several outlets, notably the Daily Caller, Jewish News Syndicate, and the Times of Israel.
Andrew Jose is a freelance reporter covering security, U.S. politics, and foreign policy, among other beats. He has bylines in several outlets, notably the Daily Caller, Jewish News Syndicate, and the Times of Israel. Speak to Andrew securely via ajoseofficial@protonmail.com. Follow Andrew on Twitter: @realAndrewJose
Education
Georgetown University, School of Foreign Service
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish, Tamil, Hindi, French
Topics of Expertise
Security, Economics, Open Source Intelligence, International Politics




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