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Israel installing sensors along Lebanon border

MISGAV AM: This picture taken yesterday shows a general view of the Israel-Lebanon border as Israeli army forces begin deployment of infrastructure for a ground “defensive system” along the fence. – AFP

JERUSALEM: Israel’s army said it would start drilling to install ground sensors along its border with Lebanon yesterday, a year after an operation to destroy tunnels dug across the frontier. “We are deploying a defensive system into the ground…in various locations” along the border, spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan Conricus told journalists. Work will get underway yesterday at the Israeli kibbutz town of Misgav Am, he said, to deploy the new noise-detecting technology.

The move comes a year after Israel concluded a weeks-long operation to destroy tunnels it accused Lebanese Shiite group Hezbollah of building. At least six tunnels were discovered in the operation dubbed “Northern Shield” along the border where a United Nations peacekeeping force is deployed. Conricus said the drilling is “not related to any new intelligence” and all military activity would take place on the Israeli side of the border.

Work at Misgav Am is expected to last a number of weeks before the sensors are installed along other sections of the border. “We understand that our activity might be seen, and most probably will be heard, on the Lebanese side,” said Conricus.

Israel has notified the UNIFIL peacekeeping force which patrols the “blue line” drawn by the UN to mark Israel’s withdrawal from southern Lebanon in 2000. Lebanon and Israel are still technically at war. A month-long conflict in 2006 between Israel and Hezbollah killed more than 1,200 Lebanese, mostly civilians, and more than 160 Israelis, mostly soldiers. – AFP

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