Mobile  |  About us  |  Photos  |  Videos  |  Subscriptions  |  RSS Feeds  |  Today's Paper  |  Classifieds  |  Contact Us
The Daily Star
WEDNESDAY, 23 APR 2014
09:40 AM Beirut time
Weather    
Beirut
22 °C
Blom Index
BLOM
1,214.01down
Lebanon News
Follow this story Print RSS Feed ePaper share this
Hezbollah having advanced arms intolerable: Israel's Barak
Agence France Presse
A Hezbollah flag flies from the border fence with Israel in the southern village of Kfar Kila as Israeli soldiers stand guard in Metula, Friday, May 11, 2012. (The Daily Star/Mohammed Zaatari)
A Hezbollah flag flies from the border fence with Israel in the southern village of Kfar Kila as Israeli soldiers stand guard in Metula, Friday, May 11, 2012. (The Daily Star/Mohammed Zaatari)
A+ A-

JERUSALEM: Israel will not tolerate the transfer of advanced weapons to Hezbollah, Defence Minister Ehud Barak said on Sunday, as fears grew about the future of Syria's suspected chemical arsenal.

"The State of Israel cannot accept the transfer of advanced weapons systems from Syria to Lebanon," he said in remarks relayed by his office.

"We are closely monitoring the possibility that Hezbollah will try to take advantage of the opportunity to transfer advanced weapons systems," he said, referring to Lebanon's Shiite militia, a key ally of the embattled regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

"It is inappropriate to say any more than this -- when we would act, how we would act, if indeed we would act," he said in remarks communicated by a spokesman.

Israel has frequently raised the alarm over the possibility of Hezbollah gaining access to Syria's suspected stockpile of chemical and other advanced weapons, fearing that such a scenario could become reality in the chaos that would accompany a collapse of the Assad regime.

And on Friday, Barak said he had told the army to prepare for a possible military operation.

"We are monitoring the situation on the Syrian-Lebanese border, that during Assad's downfall, Hezbollah will try to put their hands on advanced anti-aircraft systems, surface-to-surface missiles or elements of chemical weapons, and transfer them to Lebanon," he told private Channel Two television.

"We are following these things and preparing. I've ordered the army to prepare in such a way that if situations arise that will force us to consider action, we will be able to consider it."

Asked about Barak's remarks, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ruled out the option of seizing any such weapons.

"We didn't consider seizing them," he said in an interview with Fox News Sunday. "There are other possibilities."

Netanyahu said that it was unimaginable that Hezbollah, which Israel blames for a recently deadly suicide bombing in Bulgaria that killed five Israelis and their local driver, get its hands on chemical weapons.

"I think someone will have to act... and the need might arise if there is a regime collapse, but not a regime change" in Syria, he said.

"We'll have to consider our action," he said, stressing that Israel did not "preclude" such an option.

On Wednesday, the New York Times reported that US defence officials had held talks with their Israeli counterparts over whether Israel might strike at Syria's weapons facilities as its regime faces possible collapse.

Damascus has been engulfed in clashes over the past week, with heavy fighting breaking out across several districts as the Assad's forces try to stamp out the more than 16-month uprising.

More than 19,000 people have been killed since the revolt erupted in March 2011, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Sunday.

 
Home Lebanon News
 
     
 
Lebanon
Advertisement
Comments  

Your feedback is important to us!

We invite all our readers to share with us their views and comments about this article.

Disclaimer: Comments submitted by third parties on this site are the sole responsibility of the individual(s) whose content is submitted. The Daily Star accepts no responsibility for the content of comment(s), including, without limitation, any error, omission or inaccuracy therein. Please note that your email address will NOT appear on the site.

comments powered by Disqus
Advertisement


Baabda 2014
Advertisement
Follow us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Follow us on Linked In Follow us on Google+ Subscribe to our Live Feed
Multimedia
Images  
Pictures of the day
A selection of images from around the world- Tuesday April 22, 2014
View all view all
Advertisement
Rami G. Khouri
Rami G. Khouri
Israel shows Zionism’s true colors
Michael Young
Michael Young
Why confuse gibberish with knowledge?
David Ignatius
David Ignatius
Echoes of 1914 characterize the Ukraine crisis
View all view all
Advertisement
cartoon
 
Click to View Articles
 
 
News
Business
Opinion
Sports
Culture
Technology
Entertainment
Privacy Policy | Anti-Spamming Policy | Disclaimer | Copyright Notice
© 2014 The Daily Star - All Rights Reserved - Designed and Developed By IDS