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Thursday, May 23, 2024

More than 60,000 olive trees burnt in Israeli attacks: Lebanon

Israeli airstrikes caused 657 fires in southern Lebanon, according to Lebanese agriculture minister

Lebanon accused Israel on Wednesday of burning more than 60,000 olive trees in airstrikes in southern Lebanon since last October.

“Southern Lebanon is bombarded daily by Israel with internationally banned white phosphorus bombs,” Agriculture Minister Abbas Hajj Hassan told a meeting at the UN headquarters in the capital Beirut.

Read more: Israeli strikes kills about dozen in Lebanon : Hezbollah vows response

He said the Israeli airstrikes have caused over 657 fires and inflicted damage on “more than 6,000 dunams (6 square kilometers) of forests and agricultural lands.”

‘Over 2,000 dunams (2 square kilometers) and more than 60,000 mature olive trees were completely burned,” he added.

Tension has flared along the border between Lebanon and Israel amid intermittent exchanges of weapons fire between Israeli forces and Hezbollah, in the deadliest clashes since the two sides fought a full-scale war in 2006.

The border tension comes amid an Israeli military offensive in the Gaza Strip following a cross-border attack by Palestinian group Hamas on Oct. 7, 2023.

Read more: Israeli strikes kills about dozen in Lebanon : Hezbollah vows response

At least 300 people are estimated to have been killed in Israeli attacks in Lebanon since the clashes first erupted last October. Nearly 20 Israelis have also been killed, according to Israeli figures.