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Two IDF soldiers killed in Hezbollah attack

Cpt. Yohai Kalangel, left, and Sgt. Dor NiniTEL AVIV — Two Israeli soldiers were killed and seven were wounded this week when Hezbollah anti-tank missiles struck an Israeli patrol on the Israel-Lebanon border.

It is believed that at least five Kornet anti-tank missiles were fired onto the unarmored Israel Defense Forces D-Max vehicle near Mt. Dov.

The attack on Wednesday, Jan. 28, by the Lebanese terrorist group included shelling of Israeli army positions in Israel’s North, according to Israeli reports, which named posts on Mt. Hermon and Mt. Dov as the target of mortar shell bombings from Lebanon.

In response, the IDF hit southern Lebanon with artillery strikes, killing a Spanish soldier serving in UNIFIL, the UN peacekeeping force.

The two soldiers killed were identified as Capt. Yochai Kalangel and Sgt. Dor Haim Nini.

Kalangel was 25 years old and from the Gush Etzion bloc outside of Jerusalem. He leaves a wife, Tali, and a one-year-old child.

Nini was 20 years old and from Shitulim. He will be promoted posthumously to the rank of staff seargent.

Both soldiers were from the Tsvar Battalion of the Givati Brigade.

The wounded troops were being treated at the Sieff Hospital in Safed and the Rambam Hospital in Haifa according to Ha’aretz.

In a statement responding to the attack, Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that “For some time now, Iran via Hezbollah  is trying to set up a terror front against Israel on the Golan Heights.

“We are acting firmly and responsibly against this attemple. The Lebanese government and the Assad regime are responsible for the attacks against Israel originating from their territories.

“Our goal is to protect the State of Israel,” he said.

Israel’s Foreign Minister Avidgdor Lieberman called his Spanish counterpart, José Manuel García-Margallo, to offer Israel’s condolences for the death of the Spanish soldier.

THE HEZBOLLAH attack came hours after the IDF struck a Syrian artillery post controlled by Syrian President Bashar Assad, scoring direct hits. The strikes were in response to two rockets that hit the Golan Heights on Tuesday.

“Last night’s [IDF strike] on Syrian territory against targets belonging to the Assad regime sends a clear message: We will not tolerate any rocket fire into Israel or any infringement of our sovereignty, and we will respond [to such attacks] forcefully and decisively,” Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon said Tuesday, according to the Times of Israel.

“The Assad regime is responsible for the fire into Israel, and we will exact a heavy price from any government or organization that violates our borders.”

On Wednesday, Jan. 28, according to Israeli reports, the IDF was searching for tunnels under its northern border dug by Hezbollah.

Destroying a network of tunnels under the Israeli border with Gaza was one of the Israeli military’s main objectives last year in its war with Hamas.

IJN and Tazpit News Agency contributed to this report.



JTA

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