Michel Aoun
Michel Aoun Reuters

Lebanese President Michel Aoun on Tuesday criticized Israel in an address to the nation on the eve of the country’s 74th Independence Day.

“Israel is squatting in the southern borders, and its history with Lebanon is full of hostilities and destructive wars," said Aoun, according to Lebanon’s National News Agency.

"Today, [Israel] is violating our sovereignty, in the air and the sea and on the ground, flouting the international resolutions and threatening us with new wars," he claimed.

Aoun stressed that Lebanon will not bow to any opinion, advice, or decision that pushes it towards internal strife.

This is not the first time the Lebanese president has threatened Israel. Earlier this month, he warned that if a war with Israel were to occur, all the citizens of his country are willing to battle Israel.

“All Lebanese are ready to resist. All the Lebanese are prepared to fight against Israel. Yes, we are a small country, but we have reestablished our national unity, and part of that is a united opposition to anyone who attacks our country,” said Aoun at the time.

In February, he warned that any Israeli attempt to violate Lebanon's sovereignty would be met with the "appropriate response".

Aoun’s remarks on Israel came as part of a general address on the crisis in Lebanon surrounding the recent resignation of Prime Minister Saad Hariri.

Hariri stepped down from his post in a televised address on November 4 from Saudi Arabia and then remained in Riyadh, where he spent two weeks before making brief trips to Abu Dhabi, Paris and Cairo. He returned to Beirut on Tuesday evening.

Aoun has yet to accept Hariri's resignation, insisting that he present it in person once back in the Lebanese capital.