The international community is urging Lebanese terror group Hezbollah to avoid attacking Israel in retribution for the killing of terrorist Samir Kuntar last week, a Kuwaiti newspaper reported Saturday.
The report in Al-Qabas quoted an unnamed European official who said foreign officials had warned Hezbollah that Israel appeared prepared to deal heavy blows to the group in both Lebanon and Syria in the event of an attack.
The source further claimed that Iran was also seeking to dissuade the group from any aggressive action, as a conflagration along the Israeli front with Lebanon and Syria could have unforeseen consequences in the already tumultuous region.
Kuntar’s death in an explosion of a building near Damascus is widely believed to have been carried out by Israel. Jerusalem has not confirmed that it was behind the attack, although officials have expressed satisfaction over Kuntar’s death. There have also been Israeli reports that Kuntar was planning fresh terror attacks against Israel.
Amid fears of Hezbollah retaliation, the Israeli army in recent days instructed farmers to limit their activity near the border with Lebanon and instituted other additional security protocols in the area.
Israel Defense Forces soldiers operating along the northern border have been instructed to wear helmets and bulletproof vests to protect themselves against possible gunfire from across the border.
Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah said in a televised address Monday evening that his Shiite terror group would respond to the killing of notorious operative Kuntar.
“I hold Israel responsible for the assassination of Kuntar,” Nasrallah said in his address from Beirut. “We reserve the right to respond to this assassination at the time and place of our choosing. We in Hezbollah will exercise that right.”
Hezbollah said Kuntar, who spent nearly three decades in an Israeli prison for his part in the brutal 1979 murders of a Nahariya family, was killed along with eight others in an overnight Saturday airstrike on a residential building in Jaramana, on the outskirts of the Syrian capital of Damascus.