IDF Strikes Deep in Lebanon After Hezbollah Downs Drone; 2 Terrorists Killed

By Yoni Weiss

A Lebanese army vehicle block a road leading to a destroyed warehouse, background, which was attacked by Israeli airstrikes, on the outskirts of the Hezbollah stronghold village of Buday, near Baalbek town, east Lebanon, Monday. (AP Photo)

Following the downing of an IDF drone by Hezbollah on Monday morning, the IDF conducted airstrikes on Hezbollah targets situated “deep” within Lebanon.

The strikes are in retaliation for the drone incident over southern Lebanon.

The Hezbollah terror group says that at least two of its members were killed after IDF airstrikes near the northeastern Lebanese city of Baalbek — the deepest attack yet into Lebanon since the start of Israel’s war against Hamas.

A Hezbollah official confirmed that three strikes hit near Baalbek. He said that the strikes killed at least two people and claims that one hit a warehouse for food products that’s part of Hezbollah’s Sajjad Project, which sells to people in its stronghold at prices lower than on the market.

The IDF said that two missile launches had targeted an Israeli Air Force UAV operating over Lebanon. The first, it said, was intercepted by Israel’s David’s Sling aerial defense system but the drone “fell inside Lebanese territory” after a second launch.

Hezbollah has said it has downed or seized control of several Israeli drones in the months since it began exchanging fire with Israel across Lebanon’s southern border in support of the Hamas.

The terror group first said it downed an Israeli Hermes 450 drone in November. In recent weeks, Hezbollah said it has seized control of several Skylark drones, which are smaller surveillance drones also made by Elbit.

Hezbollah has used surface-to-air missiles on several occasions since Oct. 7 to target Israeli aircraft. It has also launched its own surveillance drones into northern Israel.

Reports from Lebanese media indicate Israeli strikes near the city of Baalbek in northeast Lebanon, marking the furthest publicly acknowledged Israeli strikes in Lebanon in years. Baalbek, previously identified as a Hezbollah stronghold, is approximately 100 kilometers from the Israeli border.

Lebanese media station Al-Jadeed broadcast images of plumes of smoke emanating from the area of Baalbek.

The Baalbek region, in Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley, is known to be a political stronghold of Hezbollah and is also an important agricultural and transport hub for Lebanon.

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