Hezbollah planted and detonated two bombs in the Har Dov region along the Lebanese-Israeli border on Tuesday, with one device injuring two IDF soldiers, in a significant escalation in the tense north.
A second blast tore through the same area about 30 minutes later, but failed to cause injuries or damages.The injured soldiers belonged to the Combat Engineering Corps bomb squad unit, which was accompanying Golani Brigade soldiers on patrol in the area.
Both bombs were planted on the Israeli side of the border.
The IDF responded by shelling two Hezbollah targets in southern Lebanon.
The IDF suspects that the incident is directly related to Sunday's attempted infiltration from Lebanon, which occurred in the same region.The dominant assessment in the defense establishment at this time is that this is a pinpoint incident which will not escalate into a wider conflict. At the same time, the IDF took a severe view of the attack by the Shi'ite terrorist organization.
"The IDF sees this incident as a gross and violent violation of Israeli sovereignty, and sees the Lebanese government and Hezbollah as responsible for any attempt to harm Israeli soldiers or civilians," the military said in a statement. "The IDF reserves the right to act in any way, and at any time, to defend the citizens of the state of Israel." Hours after the incident, Hezbollah took the unusual step of officially claiming responsibility for the border bombings.
In a statement read out on Hezbollah's Al-Manar TV station, and released on the internet, the Shi'ite organization said the bombs were planted by the Hassan Haider Brigade, apparently in reference to the name of a Hezbollah member who was reportedly killed in September, while seeking to dismantle an Israeli listening device in the Sidon region of southern Lebanon.
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