|A fire is seen on the Lebanon side of the Israel-Lebanon border following the fire exchange that took place this afternoon between Israeli and Lebanese troops, Aug. 3, 2010. (Xinhua/Jini)
JERUSALEM, Aug. 4 (Xinhua) -- Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak on Wednesday said the "unplanned" border clash on Tuesday between Lebanese Army Forces (LAF) and Israel Defense Forces (IDF) soldiers would not widen into a real crisis.
An Israel Defense Forces (IDF) officer and four Lebanese were killed on Tuesday during a border clash, the fiercest one since the fighting between Israel and the Lebanon-based Shiite group Hezbollah four years ago.
Barak told Israel Army Radio that the border clash was apparently unplanned, adding Lebanon's Hezbollah organization was not involved. He also stressed in the interview that the confrontation would not widen into a real crisis.
However, Barak on Tuesday evening demanded that the government investigate who was behind the "murderous attack." "Israel will not tolerate in any way an attack on her soldiers or civilians within her sovereign territory," he said.
Israeli opposition Kadima Party MK, and former Defense Minister, Shaul Mofaz, on Wednesday came out directly against Barak's latest conclusions. Mofaz called the shooting a "planned terror attack," that did include Hezbollah involvement.
IDF Northern Command chief, Maj.-Gen. Gadi Eisencott speaking soon after the clash, came to exactly the opposite conclusion as well.
Speaking with reporters at a press conference, Eisencott said that the incident "was a premeditated ambush by a squad of snipers that fired at the commanders who were standing next to a (military) post clearly within our territory."
Lebanon, Israel -- A return to war?
JERUSALEM, Aug. 4 (Xinhua) -- The 64-million-dollar question in the Middle East right now is whether war is about to erupt between Israel and its northern neighbor, Lebanon.
In Israel there is no clear answer, with analysts admitting they are confused by Tuesday's incident in which cross-border fire left around five people dead. Full story
Border clash kills 1 Israeli, 4 Lebanese
JERUSALEM, Aug. 3 (Xinhua) -- An Israel Defense Forces (IDF) officer and four Lebanese were killed on Tuesday during a border clash, the fiercest one since the fighting between Israel and the Lebanon-based Shiite group Hezbollah four years ago.
The gunfire and its response ensued when soldiers of the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) fired at an Israeli troops working along the border around noon. According to Israeli army sources, the Israeli soldiers were clearing bushes between the Israeli community of Misgav Am and the Lebanese village of Aadaise. Full story
Clashes bring huge tension along Israel-Lebanon border
JERUSALEM, Aug. 3 (Xinhua) -- Ever since Israel's war with the Lebanese-based Hezbollah four years ago, there have been constant warnings from both sides that a return to violence is just around the corner.
Those threats transformed into deadly fire on Tuesday with the killing of Lebanese and Israeli soldiers during an exchange across their shared border. Full story
U.S. urges restraint between Israel, Lebanon
WASHINGTON, Aug. 3 (Xinhua) -- The United States on Tuesday voiced "greatest concern" over the deadly military clashes along the Israel-Lebanon border, urging both the Israeli and Lebanese sides to exercise "maximum restraint".
"We deeply regret the loss of life; we urge both sides to exercise maximum restraint to avoid an escalation and maintain the cease-fire that is now in place," State Department spokesman Philip Crowley told reporters at the daily press briefing. Full story