BEIRUT, Lebanon: An Israeli air strike on a south Lebanon border town killed three persons including a Hezbollah fighter, the group said Wednesday.
The state media reported that two of his relatives were also killed in the attack. The Lebanon-Israel border has seen escalating exchanges of fire, mainly between the Israeli army and Hamas ally Hezbollah, since the Israel-Hamas war began in Gaza on October 7.
“Enemy warplanes raided, before midnight (2200 GMT), a house… in the centre of the town of Bint Jbeil,” around two kilometres (a little over a mile) from the border, killing a man, his brother and his wife, said Lebanon’s National News Agency.
The dead have been identified as Ali Bazzi, his brother Ibrahim and his wife Shourouk Hammoud.
“Ibrahim Bazzi had come to Lebanon a few days ago from Australia, where he has resided for years, to take his wife Shourouk with him and settle in Australia,” the NNA said. Another family member was injured, it said further.
Hezbollah later announced that Ali Bazzi was one of its fighters.
Exchanges of fire have been largely limited to the border area, although Israel has carried out limited strikes deeper into Lebanese territory. Israel has been pushing for Hezbollah to withdraw north of the Litani River, which lies about 30 kilometres north of the border.
A day earlier, Israel’s military said an anti-tank missile fired by the Iran-backed militant group injured nine soldiers as they went to assist a civilian wounded in an earlier strike.
Since October 7, more than 150 people have been killed on the Lebanese side, most of them Hezbollah combatants but also over a dozen civilians, three of them journalists, according to media reports.
On the Israeli side, at least four civilians and nine soldiers have been killed since October 7, according to figures from the Israeli military.