Head of Lebanon's Hezbollah threatens Israel and Cyprus

AFP

The head of Lebanon's Hezbollah said that nowhere in Israel would be safe if a full-fledged war breaks out between the two foes, and also threatened EU member Cyprus for the first time and other parts of the Mediterranean.

Hezbollah has been trading fire with Israel for more than eight months in parallel with the Gaza war. On Tuesday, the Iran-backed group published what it said was drone footage of sensitive military sites deep in Israeli territory.

In a televised address on Wednesday, Hezbollah chief Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah said "there will be no place safe from our missiles and our drones" in Israel in the event of a broader war.

The group also had "a bank of targets" that it could target in precision strikes, he said.

Israel "knows that what also awaits it in the Mediterranean is very big ... In the face of a battle of this magnitude, it knows that it must now wait for us on land, in the air, and at sea," Nasrallah added.

Israeli Foreign Minister Israel Katz had warned on Tuesday that a decision on an all-out war with Hezbollah was coming soon and Israel's military said "operational plans for an offensive in Lebanon were approved and validated".

Nasrallah also threatened Cyprus - the EU member state in closest proximity to Lebanon, with which it has cordial relations - accusing it of allowing Israel to use its airports and bases for military exercises.

"The Cypriot government must be warned that opening Cypriot airports and bases for the Israeli enemy to target Lebanon means that the Cypriot government has become part of the war and the resistance (Hezbollah) will deal with it as part of the war," Nasrallah said.

Cypriot President Nikos Christodoulides denied any suggestion Cyprus was taking sides in any conflict.

 

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