Hezbollah refuses to implement UN resolution, withdraw from Israeli border

Beirut has never implemented UN Res. 1701 for Hezbollah to be disarmed and the national army and UNIFIL to be the only military forces in southern Lebanon.

By Batya Jerenberg, World Israel News

Hezbollah has rejected the Israeli demand, put forward by Washington, that it move its forces away from Israel’s northern border in order to tamp down the current, low-scale fighting between the two, Reuters reported Thursday.

The report said US negotiator Amos Hochstein had posed the idea, as well as others, to Lebanese officials in his indirect talks with the Iranian terror proxy in Beirut last week. Citing an unnamed Lebanese official, the report said that all the proposals had been shot down, with the official calling them unrealistic.

While the terror group, which is an official part of the Lebanese government, says it will not stop its rocket fire on Israel until a ceasefire is declared in the Gaza Strip, “Hezbollah is ready to listen” regarding other possibilities to prevent all-out war with the Jewish state, the senior official said.

Hezbollah has been showing its support for Hamas by raining a drizzle of rockets almost every day since the Gazan terror group sparked a war by invading Israel on October 7 and massacring 1,200 people in the worst attack on the Jewish state in its history.

Earlier this month, Hezbollah stepped up its air attacks, targeting an Israeli air defense base and the IDF’s Northern Command headquarters in addition to the dozens of towns and villages that Israel had evacuated, moving tens of thousands of people to greater safety in hotels and guest houses further south.

Most of the rockets have been shot down by the Iron Dome anti-missile system, and all terrorist attempts to infiltrate the border on the ground with small teams of fighters, and through the air using UAVs, have been repelled. The IDF has also retaliated strongly, with the IDF announcing recently that it had destroyed 750 Hezbollah targets in the last three months, including many rocket launching sites and command centers.

Hezbollah itself has admitted to the loss of some 180 of its men in these counter-attacks.

Still, some 20 Israeli civilians and IDF soldiers have been killed, with the latest being an elderly mother and her adult son in the Upper Galilee village of Kfar Yuval.

Mira (70) and Barak (45) Ayalon were killed by anti-tank fire, which can hit targets up to eight kilometers away. While they pack a very much smaller punch than rockets, these projectiles fly low, quickly, and on a straight line rather than in an arc, so Israel’s defense systems cannot strike them down mid-air.

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This is one of the reasons Israel has been insisting that Beirut finally implement the internationally-binding UN Security Council Resolution 1701 that ended the 2006 Second Lebanon War. The resolution calls for a full cessation of hostilities between Israel and Hezbollah, disarmament of the terror group, and its replacement in southern Lebanon with Lebanese Army troops and UN peace-keeping forces.

Hezbollah was to withdraw to areas beyond the Litani River in Lebanon. However, although part of it meanders eight or more kilometers away from the border, its course also takes it much closer in several areas, meaning that the danger from anti-tank fire would not be completely eliminated.

The Biden administration has been pushing hard for containment of the Hamas-Israel war, fearing its transformation into a regional conflagration if it spreads to a second front in the north. For the same reason, the Americans also recently struck the Iranian-backed Houthi terrorists in Yemen after the group launched dozens of missiles at civilian cargo vessels over the last few weeks that they said were linked in some way to Israel or the U.S., in what they called a show of support for Hamas.