DECEMBER 9, 2022
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Iran Warns Israel Against War on Lebanon: "Hell with No Return"

Iran Warns Israel Against War on Lebanon: "Hell with No Return"

Iran’s interim Foreign Minister Ali Bagheri Kani has issued a stern warning to Israel against launching any aggression on Lebanon, asserting that such a move would be akin to venturing into "hell with no return." Bagheri Kani made these remarks during a press conference in Baghdad alongside Iraqi National Security Adviser Qasim al-Araji, amid escalating tensions along Lebanon’s border with the occupied territories.

"Lebanon will be hell with no return for the Zionists, and if they are wise, they will not try Lebanon again," Bagheri Kani stated, referring to Israel’s past defeats in Lebanon during the conflicts in 2000 and 2006 at the hands of Hezbollah fighters.

The Iranian diplomat emphasized that the balance of power has shifted since the surprise operation by Hamas on October 7, which was a response to intensified Israeli actions against Palestinians. He noted that Israel's attempts to revert to pre-October 7 conditions through the violence in Gaza would be futile.

Since early October, Hezbollah and Israel have been engaged in escalating exchanges of fire, intensifying particularly after Israel's killing of a senior Hezbollah commander in Jwaya, southern Lebanon. This incident has further fueled the conflict, with Hezbollah pledging to continue its retaliatory operations as long as Israel persists in its offensive against Gaza.

In a related development, Israeli politician Benny Gantz, who recently resigned from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's cabinet, has called for severe action against Lebanon if Hezbollah continues its attacks. Gantz's resignation was partly due to the lack of a post-war strategy for Gaza, yet he has expressed his party's support for aggressive measures against Lebanon.

The ongoing conflict has resulted in a devastating toll on Gaza, with at least 37,232 Palestinians, primarily women and children, killed and 85,037 injured since the hostilities began.

Bagheri Kani's warning highlights the high stakes and potential for broader regional escalation if hostilities between Israel and Hezbollah were to expand into a full-scale war.

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