On Wednesday, three rockets were fired from Lebanon into Israeli territory

Hezbollah leader says he does not want war with Israel but is ready for it

AFP/HO/IRAN PRESS - The leader of Lebanon's Shi'ite Hezbollah movement, Hassan Nasrallah

The secretary general of Lebanese Shi'ite group Hezbollah, Hasan Nasrallah, said today he does not want war with Israel but is prepared and ready to win it, amid a spike in tension on the border stemming from recent exchanges of attacks from the Jewish state and Lebanon.

"We are not looking for war, nor do we want it. But we are prepared for it and we will win it," the Hezbollah leader said in a televised speech today.

Nasrallah made the remarks a day after the Shi'ite group fired a score of rockets from southern Lebanon into Israel, which responded with strikes for the third day in a row.

Hezbollah then claimed that the rocket fire was in response to Israel's aerial bombardment the day before, the first since their 2006 war.


In this regard, Nasrallah added that his formation's response to further Israeli air strikes "can be anywhere in the north of occupied Palestine, whether in the Galilee or in the Golan".

"Our options are open," the Hezbollah leader said.

Last Wednesday, three rockets were fired from Lebanon into Israeli territory, an action that was not claimed by any group but which Israel suspects Palestinian factions in the south of the Arab country.

Israel responded with three artillery rounds and, hours later, in the early hours of Thursday morning, with a bombing raid.

The aerial action was the first by the Jewish state in Lebanon in 15 years, according to Lebanese President Michel Aoun, who called it a "flagrant and dangerous violation" of the UN Security Council resolution that ended the 2006 war.

The escalation of tension comes as Lebanon borders on collapse, plagued by a severe economic crisis, soaring inflation and shortages of basic goods, medicines and fuel, while a political stalemate continues as Prime Minister-designate Najib Mikati, the third in less than a year, is expected to form a government in the coming days.