United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres. (Reuters)

February 21, 2018

United Nations chief Antonio Guterres expressed on Monday concern over the possibility of the eruption of a direct confrontation between Israel and Lebanese group “Hezbollah.”

“I am deeply worried about hard-to-foresee escalations in the whole region,” Guterres told reporters in his native Lisbon.

“The worst nightmare would be if there is a direct confrontation between Israel and ‘Hezbollah’…the level of destruction in Lebanon would be absolutely devastating, so there are major points of concern around this situation.”

Guterres said the latest signals from Israel and the Iranian-backed “Hezbollah” showed the will to not let this happen but “sometimes a spark is enough to unleash this kind of a conflict”.

“Hezbollah” said last week it could act against Israeli oil facilities if necessary in a Lebanon-Israel offshore energy dispute. US diplomats have been mediating between the two countries after a rise in tensions also involving a dispute over a border wall and “Hezbollah’s” growing arsenal.

Later on Monday, Lebanese Army Commander General Joseph Aoun said that the military will use use every available means to confront any potential “Israeli aggression” no matter the cost.

“I affirm again our categorical rejection of the Israeli enemy infringing on Lebanon’s sovereignty and its sacred right to exploit all its economic resources,” he said via Twitter.

“The army will not spare any method available to confront any Israeli aggression, whatever that costs.”

Asharq Al Awsat

About Track Persia

Track Persia is a Platform run by dedicated analysts who spend much of their time researching the Middle East, in due process we fall upon many indications of growing expansionary ambitions on the part of Iran in the MENA region and the wider Islamic world. These ambitions commonly increase tensions and undermine stability.