War in Israel: Hezbollah releases video of attack on St Mary's Greek Melkite Church


Hezbollah on Tuesday attacked the Greek Melkite Church of St. Mary of Iqrit in northern Israel, with the Israeli military saying in a statement that the church was hit by an anti-tank missile from Lebanon, injuring a civilian.

Israeli sources originally misidentified the St. Mary of Iqrit church as belonging to the Patriarchate of Jerusalem but it is a Catholic church.

Hezbollah released video showing their attack on the church, showing an anti-tank guided missile that resulted in the serious injury of a member of the church's staff.

After the first attack, several IDF soldiers arrived at the Church to provide aid to the injured. However, a second attack took place, resulting in the injury of 9 soldiers.

The deputy spokesman for Israel's Ministry of Foreign Affairs called the attack a clear violation of UN Security Council Resolution 1701, as well as a violation of freedom of religious worship.

Resolution 1701, adopted to end the war between Israel and Hezbollah in 2006, states that only the Lebanese Army and the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) are allowed to deploy forces between the border and the Litani River.

Hezbollah yesterday claimed responsibility for several attacks on military targets in northern Israel, including a barracks hit by "Burkan-type" rockets.

The residents of Iqrit were evicted from their land by the Israeli army after the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948. The church and a cemetery are all that remain of the village which was leveled at Christmas 1951 to prevent residents from returning to it, following a decision by the Supreme Court of Israel.

Since the start of the war in the Gaza Strip, there have been almost daily clashes on the border between Israel and Lebanon. More than 150 people have been killed in Lebanon, mostly Hezbollah fighters, and another 13 in Israel, of whom 9 were soldiers.

On Wednesday, two people were injured by Israeli fire in the Toulin community of Lebanon, 10 kilometres from the border, according to the Lebanese NNA agency.

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