FM: Lebanese govt. has guarantees Hezbollah won't join war

The Lebanese government has been promised that Hezbollah will not intervene in the Hamas-Israel war, caretaker Foreign Minister Abdallah Bou Habib said.

The minister told Asharq al-Awsat newspaper, in remarks published Monday, that Hezbollah would only intervene if Israel started the war.

The interview took place in Washington before Hezbollah carried out an attack Sunday "in solidarity" with Hamas, which launched a surprise assault on Israel the day before. Hezbollah fired on Israeli positions in the contested Shebaa Farms border area and Israel retaliated and warned Hezbollah against getting involved in the fight on its southern flank with Hamas.

On Monday, caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati stressed that the government's priority is to maintain security in south Lebanon.

The PM met with Bou Habib and the latter said after the meeting that "we do not want Lebanon to join the fray and we are trying to avoid that."

The Israeli army said Monday it has "killed a number of armed suspects" who crossed the border from Lebanon. "Additionally, Israeli helicopters are currently striking in the area," the army added.

Media outlets said the infiltrators are Palestinians after prior reports claimed they were members of Hezbollah. Only minutes later, Hezbollah denied involvement.

It said the resistance has neither clashed with the Israeli enemy nor attempted any infiltration into Israel.

Source: Naharnet

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