Hezbollah Says It Has Capability to Bomb Israel From the Air

The Associated Press
The Associated Press
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The Associated Press
The Associated Press

BEIRUT - Hezbollah's leader on Friday said guerrillas who earlier in the week sent an unmanned reconnaissance drone into northern Israel are capable of bombing Israeli targets from the air with the aircraft.

The drone Hezbollah flew over Israel on Sunday "can be laden with a quantity of explosives, 40 to 50 kilograms and can hit any target, be it water or power plant, a military base or airport," Sheik Hassan Nasrallah told a mass rally in eastern Lebanon.

Nasrallah said the drone can reach "anywhere, deep, deep" into Israel.

Sunday, the militant Shiite Islamic group said that in response to Israeli violations of Lebanese airspace, it had sent the "Mirsad 1" drone flying over northern Israel at a low altitude for 20 minutes before it returned to its base.

Israel's army has said the aircraft was made in Iran, Hezbollah's patron.

Nasrallah, speaking in the Hezbollah stronghold of Baalbek in eastern Lebanon, said the drone was made and operated by Lebanese guerrillas, without external help.

The Hezbollah flight, which the guerrillas showed footage of on their TV station earlier in the week, is believed to be the first hostile aerial incursion from Lebanon into Israel since Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine-General Command members flew over in a hang glider in 1987 and killed six soldiers before being shot dead.

Friday, Nasrallah said Hezbollah had been working on the plane for years. He said Hezbollah possessed more drones, but did not say how many, and might one day offer them for sale.