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Hizbullah Infiltrators Were Planning to Kidnap Soldiers

IDF Northern District Commander Benny Gantz announced Sunday night that the army prevented an attempted kidnapping of soldiers on Israel's northern border last week.
By Hillel Fendel
First Publish: 7/4/2005, 10:20 AM / Last Update: 7/4/2005, 11:50 AM

The multi-pronged Hizbullah offensive Wednesday and Thursday had terrorists infiltrate into Israel as mortar shells were fired toward northern Israeli towns and IDF border positions. One Israeli soldier was killed in the attack, Corporal Uzi Peretz, and a number of other soldiers were wounded.

When the infiltration was detected, a tenacious IDF operation was ordered, leading to the elimination of one of the terrorists. Two others succeeded in fleeing the area, but they left their equipment behind.

Major-General Gantz said that the infiltrators were apparently well-trained and outfitted for a prolonged operation. Among the sophisticated equipment captured by the IDF was night-vision equipment, high-tech video apparatuses, weaponry and battle rations. All the equipment had Syrian or Iranian markings, the Northern Command chief noted. He explained that it was evident the terrorists had planned to remain in the field for as long as necessary to accomplish their mission, but fortunately the border infiltration was detected by IDF forces.

Major-General Gantz said further that, in the estimation of the IDF, and in light of the markings on the captured equipment, the terrorists had a political mission, as well - to disrupt the new order taking shape in Lebanon following the end of Syria's overt military occupation of that country. Gantz warned earlier this year that Hizbullah would continue to try to draw Israel into a military escalation in the north, as the date nears for the planned expulsion of Jewish residents from northern Samaria and Gaza.