A police official stated that the Lebanon based Iranian backed Hezbollah militant group is attempting to smuggle weapons into Israel for use by the Arab Israeli community.
By Rohit Ranjan
Jerusalem – A police official stated that the Lebanon based Iranian backed Hezbollah militant group was attempting to sneak weapons into Israel for use by the Arab Israeli community in future battles. Since the conflict with the Gaza Strip in May, the Israel Police have noticed a significant increase in efforts to smuggle weapons into the country via the Lebanese and Jordanian borders, as per the reports of Channel 12.
The weapons’ planned destination, according to police, is criminal groups in the Arab community, where they could be used in terror acts. Chief Superintendent Yaron Ben-Yishi, the head of the northern district police intelligence department, stated that Hezbollah is responsible for 95% of smuggling from Lebanon . He also claimed that, in the past, Hezbollah also tried to smuggle drugs into Israel but that the group has now switched their tactics to focus on weapons smuggling in preparation for war.
In July, Israeli troops seized the greatest attempted smuggling of firearms across the border from Lebanon in recent years. Northern District police officers have captured 140 handguns and 20 assault rifles since the beginning of the year, but they believe many more weapons have been successfully imported
In recent years, Arab neighbourhoods have seen an increase in violence, which has been fueled by organised crime. In the northern Arab Israeli community of Arraba, a school principal was shot and wounded on Monday. According to the Abraham Initiatives NGO, at least 111 Arabs have been killed since the start of 2021. Among them, 93 were Arab Israelis while 18 were Palestinians from East Jerusalem or with Israeli residence. According to the Times of Israel, Arab Israelis condemn the police for failing to crack down on powerful criminal organisations and mostly ignoring the violence, which includes family feuds, mafia territorial conflicts, and violence against women.