IDF repeatedly strikes south Lebanon after several rounds of Hezbollah rockets

Red alert sirens blare in northern towns throughout Friday; Israel says it hits anti-tank missile squad, rocket launching positions and other terror infrastructure

Israeli rocket launchers seen deployed in the Upper Galilee in northern Israel near the border with Lebanon on December 28, 2023. (jalaa marey / AFP)
Israeli rocket launchers seen deployed in the Upper Galilee in northern Israel near the border with Lebanon on December 28, 2023. (jalaa marey / AFP)

Hezbollah fired repeated rounds of rockets into Israel as the IDF struck a number of targets in Lebanon in response, in yet another day of violence along Israel’s northern front on Friday.

Red alert sirens blared in a number of towns along the border with Lebanon throughout the day amid rockets fired by Hezbollah.

The IDF said mid-morning on Friday that several missiles had been fired from southern Lebanon toward areas near the northern communities of Dovev and Bar’am, and that it was shelling the source of the fire with artillery.

There were no immediate reports of injuries in the attacks. Hezbollah later claimed responsibility for the rockets.

Later Friday, Lebanese media outlets reported that a car in the southern part of the country was allegedly struck by an Israeli drone. A video published by the IDF showed the strike on the vehicle in Aitaroun, which it said was an anti-tank missile squad.

Sirens again blared on Friday afternoon after several rockets were fired at northern Israel, three of which crossed the border, according to the IDF. The military said it was striking the launch sites in response.

The IDF said that its fighter jets also carried out strikes against Hezbollah sites in the Hamoul area of southern Lebanon in response to attacks on the border.

The targets included rocket launching positions, a military site and other infrastructure used by the terror group, the military said. The IDF said it also struck the anti-tank missile squad as well as a launcher used to fire missiles at Israel from the village of Yaroun earlier in the day.

A suspected drone infiltration alarm also sounded Friday in a number of northern towns, but the IDF said later that it was a false alarm.

Friday’s activity came a day after Hezbollah launched repeated barrages of rockets at northern Israel on Thursday, causing damage in the northern city of Kiryat Shmona, while the IDF carried out widespread strikes in southern Lebanon in response.

Overall, Hezbollah launched around 50 rockets and missiles as well as two drones at Israel throughout Thursday.

Damage seen in Kiryat Shmona on December 28, 2023 as a result of a rocket launched by Hezbollah in Lebanon. (Kiryat Shmona Municipality)

Separately, the UN peacekeeping mission in Lebanon on Thursday called on authorities to investigate an attack by Lebanese citizens on its forces. UNIFIL said that groups of young men in Lebanon’s south — a stronghold of the Hezbollah — blocked UNIFIL patrols twice since Wednesday, harming one of its troops.

Since October 8, Hezbollah-led forces have attacked Israeli communities and military posts along the border on a near-daily basis, with the group saying it is doing so to support Gaza amid the war there. Both Hezbollah and Hamas are backed by Iran.

So far, the skirmishes on the border have resulted in four civilian deaths on the Israeli side, as well as the deaths of nine IDF soldiers. There have also been several rocket attacks from Syria, without any injuries.

Hezbollah has named 129 members who have been killed by Israel during the ongoing skirmishes, mostly in Lebanon but some also in Syria. In Lebanon, another 19 operatives from other terror groups, a Lebanese soldier, and at least 19 civilians, three of whom were journalists, have been killed.

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