Israel has escalated its military presence near the southern Lebanese border, stepping up their surveillance activities along the Lebanese frontier, reports say.
Israeli forces patrolled the border on Sunday, carrying out maintenance work at several positions from which they monitor Lebanon, reported pan-Arabic newspaper Asharq al-Awsat.
On one occasion, a three-vehicle patrol spent more than half an hour watching Lebanese farmers at the southern village of Abbasiyyeh.
The developments came following the January 12 collapse of outgoing Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri’s cabinet and amid efforts by new Lebanese Premier-designate Najib Mikati aimed at forming a new government.
Tel Aviv has launched several wars on Lebanon, killing around 1,200 Lebanese — mostly civilians — in the most recent round of offensives in 2006.
In the deadliest of Israeli incursions to follow the war, an Israeli patrol unit breached a border fence in August. The move prompted an exchange of fire with the Lebanese military, which killed three soldiers and a journalist on the Lebanese side of the border and also left a senior Israeli officer dead.
The Lebanese resistance movement of Hezbollah, which parried Israel’s 33-day war against southern Lebanon in 2006, has vowed to respond to any new Israeli incursion.