January 19, 2004

IDF NCO killed and another severely injured in anti-tank missile strike at IDF bulldozer on the Israel-Lebanon border
(Communicated by the IDF Spokesman)

An IDF NCO was killed and another severely wounded this afternoon as a result of an anti-tank missile strike on an armored bulldozer in which they were operating to neutralize an area filled with explosive devices [explosives arena] in the western sector of the Israel-Lebanon border.

The families of the soldiers have been notified.

During the operation to neutralize the explosives planted by the Hizbullah terrorist organization in Israeli territory and were discovered on January 4, 2004, the Hizbullah fired an anti-tank missile at the force, which killed one soldier and injured another.

The IDF filed a complaint with the UN regarding the violation, and it should be noted that UNFIL officers have acknowledged tonight that they saw the firing from Lebanon towards Israel.

The Lebanese government continues to avoid enforcing its jurisdiction over southern Lebanon according to UN Resolution 425, and by doing so allows the Hizbullah to carry out attacks against IDF forces. This happens with the direct and overt funding and direction of the Syrian government.

These attacks on the State of Israel are in contradiction to UN resolutions. According to these resolutions, Israel completely fulfilled is withdrawal from southern Lebanon. On the other hand, Syria and the Hizbullah act from Lebanese territory and violate these resolutions and strike at the integrity of the State of Israel.

It should be noted that this is the fifth time in recent months that an area in which an explosives arena was discovered along the Israel-Lebanon border.