On December 4 evening, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that Israeli efforts to destroy cross-border tunnels build by Hezbollah were “not an isolated operation, but a wide and ongoing operation”.
Netanyahu claimed that the operation, entitled Northern Shield, is aimed at targeting an alleged broader push by Hezbolalh to capture parts of the Galilee from Israel.
“The aim of Hezbollah has been to dig tunnels into our territory. It is part of an effort with a breadth and depth that we have not seen before,” Netanyahu said during a televised speech at the Defense Ministry in Tel Aviv. “Hezbollah knows very well that anyone who attacks Israel will pay a heavy price.”
Netanyahu spoke alongside Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Gadi Eisenkot. The prime minister officially declared that the operation will continue until until goals achieved.
Earlier, Netanyahu met with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. The Israeli prime minister said that he spoke to the US diplomat about imposing additional sanctions on Hezbollah in light of “this new aggression.” The US, according to Netanyahu, has given Israel its full backing.
On December 4, the IDF said that it had “neutralized” a 200m-long “attack tunnel” near at the Israeli-Lebanese border. A part of the tunnel, which was allegedly created by Hezbollah, was located near the Israeli town of Metulla.
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