Lebanon

Spotlight on Terrorism: Hezbollah, Lebanon and Syria (July 28 – August 3, 2023)

Hezbollah unveiled a twin-barreled missile-launch system capable of firing two anti-tank missiles almost simultaneously. The United States Treasury Department has imposed sanctions on the Hezbollah-affiliated Green Without Borders organization. The Security Council formulated a draft for the renewal of UNIFIL's mandate which apparently did not include the amendments requested by Lebanon.On August 14, 2023, the rig for the trial drilling in the Qana field reached Lebanon's offshore area In Syria there were explosions in Hezbollah missile warehouses with conflicting reports about the circumstances. Hezbollah provided training in the use of UAVs for operatives of the pro-Iranian militias.
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Spotlight on Iran (July 31-August 14, 2023)

The Syrian foreign minister arrived in Tehran for an official visit, during which he met with senior Iranian officials. Concurrently with the foreign minister’s visit, the joint economic committee of the two countries convened in Tehran. IRGC’s Qods Force Commander Esmail Qaani recently visited Syria and Lebanon. Syrian sources reported ongoing activity by the IRGC and pro-Iranian militias in eastern Syria, possibly in view of preparations for a possible confrontation between the United States and Iranian-backed militias in the region. An Iranian parliamentary delegation headed by the chairman of the Majles National Security and Foreign Policy Committee visited Syria and Lebanon and met with senior officials from both countries as well as representatives of Palestinian organizations. The Iranian foreign ministry spokesman expressed Iran’s concern over the recent violent incidents in the Ein al-Hilweh refugee camp on the outskirts of Sidon in southern Lebanon. He stressed the need for unity among the Palestinians so that all resources could be devoted to continuing the struggle against Israel.
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Spotlight on Terrorism: Hezbollah, Lebanon and Syria (August 4-10, 2023)

Tensions continued on the Israel-Lebanon border, but with fewer Hezbollah provocations than in previous weeks. The Lebanese government again claimed Israel violated UN resolutions regarding the border. Lebanese army officers conducted a tour for 15 embassy representatives of UN Security Council members and showed them the disputed sites along the Lebanon-Israel border. Lebanon is expected to send an official delegation to UN Headquarters in New York to advance its position for the renewal of the UNIFIL mandate in Lebanon. Calm returned to the Ein al-Hilweh refugee camp (near Sidon) after last week's violent incidents. During the disturbances several Arab countries called on their citizens to leave Lebanon and others called on them to avoid conflict zones. A Hezbollah truck carrying weapons overturned in the Christian town of al-Kahala, southeast of Beirut, causing riots between Hezbollah operatives and local residents which resulted in the deaths of a Hezbollah operative and the local resident who shot him.
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Spotlight on Terrorism : Hezbollah, Lebanon and Syria (July 28-August 3, 2023)

This past week masked Lebanese cut the security fence near the village of Ghajar, waved the Hezbollah flag and chanted slogans at Israel, increasing the tension between Israel and Lebanon. Hassan Nasrallah, Hezbollah secretary general, claimed Israel still held territories belonging Lebanon and penetrated Lebanese airspace. On July 29, 2023, violent clashes broke out and shots were fired in the Ain al-Hilweh refugee camp near Sidon, following the attempted assassination of a Salafist operative. Wassim Mansouri was appointed to serve as governor of the Lebanese Central Bank of Lebanon.Preparations continue to begin drilling in Lebanon's offshore gas field.
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Spotlight on Iran (July 20-31, 2023)

Iran condemned the IDF operation in Nablus, in which three armed Palestinians were killed. Additionally, the Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman condemned Israel’s National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir’s visit to the Temple Mount. Reuters reported on a recent meeting between senior officials from the IRGC’s Qods Force and Hamas, during which they discussed the internal crisis in Israel. Newsweek published an investigative report on the Imam Hossein Division, the pro-Iranian militia considered the strongest in Syria and linked to the IRGC’s Qods Force. Iran condemned the attack carried out by ISIS on July 27, 2023, in the Shiite quarter on the outskirts of Damascus, in which six people were killed. There were no casualties among Iranian pilgrims.
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Spotlight on Terrorism: Hezbollah, Lebanon and Syria (July 21-27, 2023)

Tension along the Israel-Lebanon border This past week Hezbollah and its affiliates continued provocations near the border; the most blatant was a patrol of armed Hezbollah operatives very close to Dovev, an Israeli moshav. Road construction works continued in Kafr Shuba. Lebanese politicians back Hezbollah's demands for Israel's complete withdrawal from the area of the Shebaa Farms and Kafr Ghajar Hassan Nasrallah, Hezbollah's secretary general, delivered a speech in which he referred to the passing of Israel's Standard of Reasonableness Law and its influence on Israel's internal affairs UNIFIL said in a statement that every day its forces carried out more than 450 [sic] operational activities in south Lebanon, stressing that the force acted independently.The presidential crisis in Lebanon continues, with Hezbollah officials continuing to support the candidacy of Suleiman Frangieh. The international attempts to resolve the crisis have led to increasing tensions between Hezbollah and Saudi Arabia. Iran might also join the countries assisting the process of electing a president.
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