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Israel: Iran Smuggling Weapons to Hizbullah through Civilian Conduits
Israel's permanent representative to the United Nations, Danny Danon. (Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images)

Israel: Iran Smuggling Weapons to Hizbullah through Civilian Conduits

Israel’s ambassador to the United Nations has accused Iran of using civilian conduits to smuggle advanced weaponry to its proxy in Lebanon, Hizbullah. In a quarterly meeting on the Middle East by the UN’s Security Council, Danny Danon said Israeli intelligence had evidence that Iran’s Quds Force – the elite unit of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps responsible for overseeing and conducting military operations abroad – was using the port of Beirut to ship items to the terror group. “In the years 2018-2019, Israel found that dual-use items [which can be used for both civilian and military purposes] are smuggled into Lebanon to advance Hizbullah’s rocket and missile capabilities,” Danon said. He added that “Iran and the Quds Force have begun to advance the exploitation of civilian maritime channels, and specifically the Port of Beirut,” which the envoy dubbed the “Port of Hizbullah.” In a statement, the Israeli mission clarified that “Syrian agents” were purchasing materials from foreign companies under false pretenses before transferring them to Hizbullah. Danon also presented a map of additional transfer routes, including hubs at the Damascus airport and the border crossings between Syria and Lebanon. In his September 2018 speech to the UN General Assembly, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu accused Hizbullah, in conjunction with Iran, of constructing underground military facilities meant to transform rudimentary projectiles into precision-guided missiles in and around the Lebanese capital. He said that Hizbullah was “deliberately using the innocent people of Beirut as human shields.” Netanyahu then revealed aerial photographs of three such sites, stressing to Hizbullah: “Israel knows what you are doing, Israel knows where you are doing it, and Israel will not let you get away with it.”

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