Hezbollah warns Israel it will 'also go back to the Stone Age' if it attacks Lebanon

Hassan Nasrallah makes threat after similar warning from Israel last week

Powered by automated translation

Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah has warned Israel it will “also go back to the Stone Age” if it attacks Lebanon, after an Israeli minister issued the same threat last week.

Israeli Defence Minister Yoav Gallant had threatened to “return Lebanon to the Stone Age” amid weeks of tension with Hezbollah along Lebanon's southern border.

Southern Lebanon is controlled by the powerful Iran-backed armed group and political party.

Mr Nasrallah made his comments during an event marking the anniversary of the end of the 2006 war between Israel and Hezbollah – the last major conflict between the two sides.

The month-long 2006 war came after Hezbollah operatives attacked two Israeli Humvees in a cross-border raid, killing several Israeli soldiers and taking two captive. The ensuing conflict killed hundreds of soldiers and civilians.

During the event, Mr Nasrallah also touched on the clashes last week between Hezbollah and Christian residents of a village overlooking Beirut.

Those clashes came after a Hezbollah vehicle transporting ammunition overturned in the town of Kahaleh, which led to clashes.

Both sides have accused each other of shooting first in a brief skirmish that broke out after residents gathered around the overturned lorry.

The fighting comes amid heightened tension in Lebanon, with the deeply divided parliament unable to agree on the country's next president and as the country grapples with an unprecedented economic crisis.

Mr Nasrallah called for calm and insisted Hezbollah did not have any problems with the people of Kahaleh. He said the ongoing investigation would reveal who attacked first.

But in a clear jibe at Hezbollah's opponents, he claimed that some political leaders were intent on pushing Lebanon towards conflict.

'This country is based on partnership, it is not easy, but there is no other choice,” Mr Nasrallah said.

Hezbollah was the only post-civil war militia to keep its arms. Its critics accuse it of holding the country for ransom given the vast number of weapons its members have.

Updated: August 14, 2023, 7:33 PM