Israel launches military operation against 'Hezbollah tunnels'

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The latest operation comes a day after Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in Brussels, where he was reported to have been updated on the anti-tunnel action.

The camera was placed by the IDF earlier on Tuesday, as part of Operation Northern Shield to expose and neutralize terror tunnels built by Hezbollah along the border.

A spokesman, Lt. Col. Jonathan Conricus, said the Israel military was aware of a number of tunnels crossing into Israel from Lebanon to the north, and that the army would only be operating within Israel and not crossing the border.

Israeli military personnel and a drill are seen as they work next to the border with Lebanon, near Metulla, northern Israel December 4, 2018.

Israel has been using what it says is new technology to detect and destroy tunnels built by Hamas in the south, under the fence with Gaza.

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Israel has launched what it calls "an operation to expose and neutralise" tunnels between Lebanon and Israel allegedly made by armed group Hezbollah.

Hezbollah is backed by Iran, Israel's main enemy. He did not explain why the operation to uncover the tunnels started now. In recent years, Israel has destroyed dozens of tunnels dug by Hamas under their shared border.

Army spokesperson Conricus pointed the finger at Iran for providing the funding and support for Hezbollah's tunnel program. I also said that there is more than meets the eye.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) has watched Hezbollah's tunnel digging for a few years, waiting for the right moment to nip the threat in the bud.

Once inside Israel, they would be able to enter border villages, murder and kidnap Israeli civilians and soldiers, and plant the yellow Hezbollah flag in an Israeli village.

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"The overall situation in UNIFIL's area of operation remains calm", Joumana Sayegh, a spokeswoman for the United Nations mission that monitors the border region, said in a statement.

Hezbollah, which possesses one of the most powerful militias in the region, has threatened to attack Israel with its vast rocket arsenal if war breaks out.

Israel appears increasingly concerned that Iran is attempting to transfer some of its military influence from Syria, where Russian Federation is the government's top ally, to Lebanon. Israel has generally refrained from engaging in Syria's civil war, though it has carried out scores of airstrikes against what Israel says were Iranian shipments of advanced weapons bound for Hezbollah.

Miko Peled, a former member of the Israeli army who has now become a pro-Palestinian activist, also believes that the Israeli operation is actually meant to distract public opinion from Netanyahu's corruption probes.

Additional IDF troops were deployed to northern Israel as a precaution against potential attacks by Hezbollah, but no reservists were called up.

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Neither side appears interested quite yet in another full-fledged confrontation like the 2006 war, but any skirmish could spark an all-out conflict along the tense border.

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