By Abdel Raouf Arnaout
JERUSALEM (AA) – Israeli Education Minister Naftali Bennett said Wednesday any rocket fire from Lebanon will be considered a “declaration of war”.
"The launch of any missile from Lebanon into Israel would mean a declaration of war on Israel by the Lebanese government," Bennett told a conference at the Institute for National Security Studies at Tel Aviv University.
Bennett, a leader of the Jewish Home Party, accused Shia Iran of using “proxies” to fight Israel for the past three decades.
"We [the Israelis] paid a lot of the price, but Iran paid nothing. We are fighting only Iran's proxies,” he said, going on to call for drafting a “wider strategy” to counter threats.
"I call for a strategy for the country hosting the threat, Hezbollah means Lebanon and we would not accept any separation between the two entities,” he said.
For decades, Israel-Iran relations have been characterized by deep animosity. While Tehran sees Israel as its biggest enemy, the Jewish state insists Iran must be prevented from achieving a nuclear deterrent.
In recent weeks, Israeli officials have warned that they will not allow Tehran to build what they call “precision missile factories” in Lebanon, where its ally Hezbollah sits on the Lebanese government.
In 2006, Israel and Hezbollah fought a 36-day war in Lebanon, which came to a halt under a UN resolution under which an international peacekeeping force was deployed along the border.