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IDF Confirms Wave Of Airstrikes On Southern Lebanon After Rocket Barrage


The Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) have confirmed that they have begun an 'extensive' set of airstrikes on southern Lebanon following a lethal barrage of rocket attacks into northern Israel that killed one and injured eight more in and around a military base in Safed earlier today. On 13 Feb, Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah claimed that only a ceasefire in Gaza would halt his group's campaign of shelling and rocket attacks on Israel.

  • In recent weeks the regional geopolitical and security focus has moved away from Lebanon, with the concentration on the prospects (or lack thereof) of a ceasefire between Hamas and Israeli in Gaza, as well as the situation in and around the Red Sea with regards to Houthi attacks on commercial shipping.
  • However, the prospect of an escalation along the Israeli-Lebanese border remains a notable risk. Iran-backed Hezbollah, despite targeted strikes on senior figures in recent months, is a much larger and more well-armed group than Hamas. As such, any signal of the outbreak of a significant conflict with the IDF would substantially raise security risks both in Israel and Lebanon, and the wider Middle East.
  • Earlier today, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas calledon Hamas to swiftly engage in an exchange of hostages with Israel to avoid "dire consequences". However, given Abbas' widespread unpopularity with many Palestinians, and the lack of influence of his Fatah organsiation over Hamas, the call could fall on deaf ears.

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