Explosion rocks Hezbollah weapons depot in southern Lebanon
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Explosion rocks Hezbollah weapons depot in southern Lebanon

Ta'labāyā : Lebanon | Dec 17, 2012 at 6:43 AM PST
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Lebanon's Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah

A huge explosion, apparently at a Hezbollah weapons depot, rocked the southern town of Tair Harfa at dawn Monday near the Lebanon-Israel border, Lebanon's state agency has reported.

Andrea Tenenti, spokesman for the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL), said it was investigating.

Local security officials said Hezbollah, which effectively controls much of the south of the country, had already cordoned off the area and had not authorized anyone to speak publicly about the blast.

Another Lebanese security source told AFP news the blast was caused by a rocket that had been fired into Lebanon during the 2006 war with Israel but did not detonate on impact. He urged the state to clear the areas contaminated with cluster bombs so that the Lebanese could invest in their agricultural lands.

Residents said the explosion apparently was in an ammunition depot in town of Tair Harfa, as black smoke was seen rising from the site. The explosion caused no human casualties, but did kill several farm animals.

Witnesses confirmed that Israeli military warplanes flew over several areas in Lebanon before the explosion occured.

Earlier Israel accused Hezbollah of building its military infrastructure south of the Litani River within the civilian population.

Later in the day, Hezbollah sources denies blast has occurred in its depot. At the same time Hezbollah's television station, Al-Manar, said that Hezbollah blames Israel for the explosion. Adding it was part of the repeated aggressions mounted by the Zionist enemy against Lebanon and specifically South Lebanon, its people, its water and its right of defense.

In related news, Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah said during a Hezbollah-organized ceremony on Sunday that the “powerful” Zionist entity was over, forever, following the defeat it faced in the last offensive against Gaza.

In his speech Hezbollah leader also said, the situation in Syria is getting more complicated, but anyone who thinks the armed opposition can settle the situation on the ground is very very mistaken.

Opinion:

This is not the first bombing to happen in southern Lebanon since the end of the war, which was between Hezbollah and Israel in 2006. However, this explosion occurred hours after Nasrallah's speech. It seems that the bombing was a message to Nasrallah that Israel can still target the arms held by Hezbollah.

According to witnesses, the targeted location is a warehouse weapon, but Lebanese security always deny that there are weapon depots for Hezbollah. They always emphasize that they control the south with the international peacekeeping forces.

Hezbollah denied that the explosion occurred inside a weapons depot belonging to them, but held Israel responsible for the bombing, as usual. It seems that Hezbollah does not want to exploit the bombing as an excuse to launch an attack or response by firing rockets at Israel, because the Lebanese arena, and in particular the opposition, would consider Hezbollah's response as providing a lifeline to the Syrian regime through igniting a war. The war will only benefit Nasrallah's ally, the Syrian regime. Furthermore, the Lebanese public opinion frankly declares that they do not want to use Lebanese territory to execute Syrian or Iranian plans.

As for the area where the explosion occurred, all its population are Shiites belonging to Hezbollah. Thus we do not expect to know the truth about the explosion, which some residents of Tyre city said they heard. The opposition sources said that the warehouse contained Syrian regime weapons, but this has not been confirmed.

Sources:

http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4320836,00.html

http://www.haaretz.com/news/middle-east/explosion-strikes-south-lebanon-near-israel-border-1.485355

http://www.dailystar.com.lb/News/Politics/2011/Nov-23/154877-huge-blast-rocks-hezbollah-stronghold-in-south-lebanon.ashx

http://news.yahoo.com/report-explosion-lebanon-near-israel-border-065422614.html

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A huge explosion in Hezbollah weapons depot in South Lebanon
UN peacekeeping forces on the Lebanon-Israeli border. Reuters
saleh1966 is based in Gaza, Ġazzah, Palestine, and is an Anchor for Allvoices.
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