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Hezbollah arsenal looks intact

india Updated: Aug 07, 2006 00:46 IST
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AS ISRAEL continued its bombardment of Tyre and Sidon, a Hezbollah rocket killed 10 Israeli civilians and wounded another nine when it hit a building at Kfar Giladi, a town just north of the Israeli city of Qiryat Shamona.

The city has already been targeted several times in the 26 days of conflict but the number of casualties recorded on Sunday makes this the single-most deadly rocket attack to have rocked Israel since July 12.

The Hezbollah arsenal is showing no sign of having being emptied — a barrage of 175 Katyusha rockets is believed to have hit Israel on Friday. And with every new Hezbollah attack, fears of retaliatory, and more deadly, Israeli airstrikes start clouding the minds and affecting the lives of the Lebanese people.

All hopes are now being pinned on a UN resolution, the nuances of whose draft are still being debated by representatives and experts representing the 15 Security Council nations.

But whether or not the resolution will move the country toward an effective solution remains to be seen. The Lebanese government has expressed concern over the draft not being balanced enough.

Speaking to reporters on Saturday night, Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora said, "The motives of the French and the Americans cannot be questioned as the resolution does seek to move us closer to peace, but the resolution in itself does not seem to be adequate enough for those motives to be realised."

Siniora's primary concern would seem to be that the draft resolution does not make any mention of the withdrawal of the 10,000 Israeli troops that have been positioned on the Israeli-Lebanese border.

Rami Khouri, editor-at-large of Daily Star, a Lebanese English daily, says, "This draft is not acceptable to both parties that have diametrically opposed desires and motives." Still, Khouri expects the hostilities to cease in another three-four days. Hospitals around Lebanon will hope that Khouri is proved right.

Dr Ghassan Hage, senior adviser to the Minister of Health, says: "Three hospitals in southern Lebanon have had to shut down because there aren't enough supplies. Moreover, with a fuel crisis slowly engulfing the country, their generators are not being able to run."

Hage fears many more hospitals are using their last reserves and will also have to close their gates to Lebanese nationals, who are now in dire need of medical and health care.