2 rockets also launched from Syria

IDF foils more terror cells in southern Lebanon, strikes Hezbollah position

Military says drones hit squads preparing and carrying out missile and rocket attacks on army posts and northern towns

Emanuel (Mannie) Fabian is The Times of Israel's military correspondent

IDF troops are seen in northern Israel, next to the border with Lebanon,  October 24, 2023. (Ayal Margolin/Flash90)
IDF troops are seen in northern Israel, next to the border with Lebanon, October 24, 2023. (Ayal Margolin/Flash90)

The Israel Defense Forces said Tuesday it had foiled several plans by Hezbollah terrorists to carry out attacks against Israel from southern Lebanon, as skirmishes continued on the northern border amid fears a new front could be opened as the military continues its war with Hamas terrorists in the Gaza Strip in the south.

On Tuesday morning, the IDF said it carried out a drone strike against a terrorist in southern Lebanon attempting to launch rockets at Israel, near the northern community of Bar’am.

In a second incident several hours later, the IDF said a drone attacked a terror cell in Lebanese territory near the Mount Dov area on the border, and “destroyed weapons used by the cell.”

Shortly after that, the IDF said a military drone struck two more cells in southern Lebanon that were launching mortars and anti-tank guided missiles at army posts and nearby towns on the border. The mortar launches set off sirens in the northern communities of Elkosh and Netua.

The IDF said it also shelled the area of the mortar and missile launches with artillery.

In yet another strike, the IDF said forces attacked a cell in southern Lebanon preparing to carry out a missile attack near Kibbutz Yiftah.

Also Tuesday, the IDF said anti-tank guided missiles were fired from Lebanon at the Shtula and the Manara areas on the border. No injuries were caused in the attacks.

A combat helicopter also struck a Hezbollah position in response to the recent missile attacks, the IDF added.

Hezbollah claimed responsibility for the missile attacks on Tuesday.

In a separate incident on Tuesday night, the IDF said two rockets were launched from Syria, setting off alarms in the Golan Heights communities of Neot Golan, Bnei Yehuda, and Givat Yoav.

According to the IDF, both projectiles landed in open areas.

The IDF said it was responding with artillery shelling at the source of the fire in Syria.

Israeli soldiers patrol near the Israeli border with Lebanon, northern Israel, October 19, 2023. (David Cohen/Flash90)

Hezbollah has fired dozens of anti-tank guided missiles, rockets and mortars at Israeli military positions and Israeli towns since the October 7 Hamas onslaught. It also sent gunmen — some affiliated with Palestinian terror groups — to infiltrate northern Israel. Several drones have been intercepted over northern Israel.

Amid the repeated attacks from Lebanon, the military and Defense Ministry have been evacuating 42 border communities and the city of Kiryat Shmona. Many residents in northern towns had already evacuated southward amid the escalating attacks.

In recent days, the IDF has reported striking more than 30 terror cells in southern Lebanon.

The tit-for-tat attacks have so far remained limited in scope, amid threats from Israel that Lebanon will suffer if Hezbollah steps up its attacks.

At least six Israeli soldiers, 35 Hezbollah gunmen and six Palestinian gunmen have been killed in the exchanges. One Israeli civilian was killed in a Hezbollah attack, and several Lebanese civilians and a journalist were also reported killed by Israeli shelling.

The attacks from Lebanon have come as Israel is waging war in Gaza against Hamas after the terror group’s murderous assault on the country on October 7, in which it killed some 1,400 people, mostly civilians, and kidnapped over 200 people and took them to the Strip.

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