US warns Israel not to escalate tensions with Lebanon amid Gaza war

2023-11-13 18:44:18
US warns Israel not to escalate tensions with Lebanon amid Gaza war

US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has warned Israel against escalating tensions with Lebanon’s Hezbollah resistance movement amid the regime's onslaught in the Gaza Strip, a report says.

Austin expressed concern to Israel’s minister of military affairs Yoav Gallant in a call on Saturday about Israel's role in escalating tensions along the border between Israel and Lebanon, Axios reported, citing US and Israeli sources briefed on the call.

Austin's warning came amid fears that escalating tensions on the border separating Lebanon from Occupied Palestine could lead to a regional war that would draw the US further into the conflict.

In the public readout of the Austin-Gallant call, the Pentagon said the Austin “emphasized the need to contain the conflict to Gaza and avoid regional escalation” without specifically mentioning Lebanon.

However, two informed US and Israeli sources said Austin specifically mentioned concerns about Israeli military action in Lebanon.

An Israeli source even said Austin asked Gallant for clarification about Israeli airstrikes in Lebanon and urged Israel to refrain from taking actions that could lead to an all-out war between the Israeli regime and Hezbollah fighters.

Gallant assured Austin that Israel does not seek to open a second front in Lebanon and ruled out such a scenario, according to the Israeli source.

Since the beginning of the Israeli aggression in Gaza on October 7, daily clashes have taken place between Israeli troops and Hezbollah fighters.

A Hezbollah officer has recently said his comrades with the resistance movement are fully prepared for any Israeli assault and have been mobilized in two regions on the border between Lebanon and the 1948 Israeli-occupied territories, as well as the occupied Golan Heights and the Galilee region.

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