Netanyahu: Israel will Respond Forcefully to Further Attacks
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu instructed the IDF to respond forcefully to any further aggression from Lebanon, and laid the blame for Tuesday's deadly incident on the government of Lebanon.
"Israel views the attack on IDF soldiers with great gravity,” Netanyahu said in a formal statement Tuesday evening. “This is a grave breach of [United Nations] Security Council Resolution 1701,” he said. “I see the Lebanese government as directly responsible for this violent provocation against Israel. Israel has responded forcefully and will do so in the future as well, against any attempt to break the peace on the northern border and to harm the residents of the north and the soldiers who defend them.”
Defense Minister Ehud Barak called the incident a “murderous terror attack” and warned the Lebanese government against “continuing to provoke the IDF as they have been doing recently.” He demanded that the Lebanese Army investigate and find out who was responsible for Tuesday's attack.
The United States said Tuesday that it is "extremely concerned" about the violence on the Lebanon/Israel border. State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said the U.S. was in touch with both governments to try and establish what exactly happened.
"We deeply regret the loss of life; we urge both sides to exercise maximum restraint to avoid an escalation and maintain the ceasefire that is now in place," Crowley told reporters.
"We are trying to understand what happened ... Our greatest concern is that whatever did happen not be repeated. The region has enough tension as it is. The last thing that we want to see is that this incident expand into something more significant," Crowley said according to Reuters.