On March 5, Lebanese soldiers engaged in a rare brawl with Israeli soldiers who breached the separation line between the two countries.
In a statement, the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) said that a patrol of the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) violated the Blue Line at the village of Aita al-Shaab in south Lebanon by a meter. The Blue Line is the line set by the United Nations for the withdrawal of the Israeli forces from Lebanon in 2000.
A Lebanese unit intervened and forced the Israeli patrol to retreat beyond the Blue Line. Later a unit from the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) arrived at the scene to verify the Israeli breach.
A spokesman for UNIFIL told the Lebanese news outlet L’Orient that it is “aware of tensions along the Blue Line in the area of Aita al-Shaab, where some Israeli maintenance works are ongoing” and that it its “peacekeepers are on the spot to de-escalate the situation.”
There was no comment from the IDF on the LAF statement. Ali Shoeib, a reporter for the Hezbollah-backed Lebanese Al-Manar news television, shared videos on Twitter appearing to show Israeli and Lebanese soldiers arguing.
The situation along the separation line between Israel and Lebanon has been tense for a while now. On February 22, the IDF fired several artillery illumination shells at the southern Lebanese village of Wadi Khansa for unknown reasons. The shelling caused some material losses.
The brawl between the Lebanese and Israeli soldiers will not likely lead to any further escalation. However, it highlights tensions between the two countries.
Source: South Front