America: Lebanon attack on Israel 'unjustified'

By Jennifer Lipman, August 5, 2010
Dov Harari was one of those killed in the attack

Dov Harari was one of those killed in the attack

America has laid the blame for the flare-up on Israel’s northern border with the Lebanese.

The US State department called the attack, which left an Israeli commander and three others dead, "totally unjustified and unwarranted".

Lebanon had initially accused Israeli forces of provoking the fighting by crossing the border as they carried out maintenance work on a tree.

But United Nations peacekeepers probing the incident said Israel had been doing “routine work south of the international borderline”.

The UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) are carrying out further investigations but said that they regularly face complaints over Lebanese provocations.

UNIFIL’s findings backed up an IDF statement that Israeli forces only opened fire in response to sniper shooting from Lebanon.

This was the worst breakdown in relations between Israel and Lebanon since the war with Hizbollah in summer 2006.

P.J. Crowley, a spokesman for the State department, said that America “support the government of Lebanon" but added: "We don't want to see this happen again.”

Mr Crowley continued: “We're going to be working intensively to see that tensions along this border are eased."

Last updated: 2:49pm, November 2 2010