Israel says Hezbollah drone intercepted, Lebanon launches probe

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Israel said that it intercepted a drone launched by the Iran-backed Hezbollah group in Lebanon, which has launched an investigation into the incident.

An Israeli military spokesperson said in a statement that troops shot down the unmanned aerial vehicle which entered the country’s airspace after crossing the border from Lebanon, reports Xinhua news agency.

“The drone was monitored by the IDF (Israel Defense Forces) throughout the incident,” said the statement, adding that the IDF will continue to operate in order to prevent any attempt to violate Israeli sovereignty.

Meanwhile, a Lebanese army intelligence source told Xinhua that the country’s military and security authorities had opened an investigation into the incident in coordination with the UN.

The source said that the Lebanese side received a report from the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL), indicating that the Israeli army had shot down an unmanned aircraft that infiltrated the airspace from Lebanon.

On the Lebanese side, the UNIFIL conducted patrols in coordination with Lebanese armed forces along the Blue Line, the source added.

The incident came one day after Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah said that his group has been manufacturing drones inside Lebanon and has the ability to turn thousands of rockets into precise missiles.

Hezbollah and Israel, which fought a major war in 2006, have since then maintained a delicate balance of conflict with short flare-ups.

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