IDF sources say can't confirm Liberman's claim Hezbollah behind latest rockets
Jalaa MAREY (AFP)
Sources within the Israel Defense Force (IDF) and defense establishment have indicated that it is still unclear whether a barrage of rockets that landed in Israel's Golan Heights on Saturday were fired deliberately at the Jewish State by Hezbollah militants, as Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman has claimed.
The IDF said in a statement Saturday that five projectiles landed in Israeli territory and deeming the incident spillover from the Syrian civil war. It struck three Syrian artillery positions in response to the rocket fire and warned that "whether errant fire or not, any future occurrences will force the IDF to intensify its response."
Speaking to his Yisrael Beiteinu party, Liberman said that the cross-border rocket fire was "deliberate and carried out by Hezbollah, which is trying to drag Israel into battle."
He claimed that the incident came as a "personal and direct order from [Hezbollah leader Hassan] Nasrallah."
Hebrew media outlet Walla and the Haaretz daily cited military and defense sources as saying that they could not confirm Liberman's assertion.
Liberman's office told Haaretz in response that his remarks "reflect the minister's best judgment."
On Saturday night Channel Two cited sources in the "defense establishment" as backing Liberman's estimation that the rocket fire was deliberate, saying that the launch time was unusual and that there were no known battles taking place in the area at the time.
Projectiles have sporadically landed in northern Israel throughout Syria's years-long civil war.
Israel holds the regime of Bashar Al-Assad responsible for all fire emanating from the country, and has responded to previous incidents of rocket spillover by striking Syrian army positions.
Israel has also warned of the growing influence of the Lebanese-based Hezbollah group in war-torn Syria, and is concerned that its backers Iran are using it to stake out a permanent military presence in the region.
Lieberman has warned previously that Israel would do everything in its power to prevent Iran creating a Shiite corridor stretching from Tehran to Beirut.
It has been reported to have carried out several airstrikes against Hezbollah weapons caches and convoys in Syria, though Israel has not confirmed nor denied individual strikes.
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The black rat is hidding in a black hole.