Gantz warns any Hezbollah 'attack' on Karish gas field may mean war
Israeli occupation Security Minister Benny Gantz claims that any attack from Hezbollah on Karish may lead "to several days of fighting and to a military campaign."
The Israeli occupation said on Monday that any "attack" by Hezbollah on the Karish offshore platform could spark war after the Lebanese party warned to "sever" the occupation's hands if it infringes on Lebanon's rights and natural resources.
The warning from the Israeli occupation Security Minister Benny Gantz comes amid lengthy indirect US-mediated negotiations between Lebanon and "Israel" to settle a dispute over their maritime border.
Tensions spiked in June when a production vessel chartered by the Israeli occupation arrived near the Karish offshore gas field, which Lebanon says is within contested waters.
On July 2, the Lebanese Resistance movement Hezbollah launched three unarmed UAVs of various sizes toward the disputed region of the Karish gas field on a reconnaissance mission. The mission was completed and the message was delivered.
Hezbollah Secretary-General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah warned on August 9 that "the hand that reaches for any of this wealth will be severed."
Asked if any attack by Hezbollah against the Karish platform could lead to war, Gantz claimed, "Yes, that could trigger a reaction."
"Leading to several days of fighting and to a military campaign. We are strong and prepared for this scenario, but we don't want it," the Israeli Minister told 103 FM radio station.
Gantz said extraction from the gas field would begin "when it is ready to produce," insisting on "Israel's" illegal claims to Karish.
"Israel is both ready to protect its assets and ready to reach a deal with the Lebanese government, via American mediation, on the Sidon deposit," he claimed in reference to another gas field known in Lebanon as Qana.
The Israeli Minister said, "I believe that in the future, there will be two gas platforms. One on our side, one on theirs. And I hope that we do not have to go through another round of confrontations before then."
Gantz's remarks come as Israeli media reported on Sunday that "Israel" is worried that Hezbollah would carry out another "provocation" before the possible signing of an indirect maritime border agreement between "Israel" and Lebanon.
However, the media failed to present any information regarding what kind of "provocation security officials believe Hezbollah will carry out."
On Friday, Hezbollah Secretary-General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah underlined that "If Lebanon does not obtain the rights demanded by the Lebanese state, we are heading toward an escalation whether or not the (Iranian) nuclear agreement is signed."
It is noteworthy that on Saturday, a Lebanese official source confirmed that Lebanon and "Israel" are close to reaching an agreement on the demarcation of the maritime borders.
In a statement to Sputnik, the source said, "We are very close to reaching an agreement on the demarcation of the maritime border with Israel, and we have been informed that the answer the US mediator Amos Hochstein will carry from the Israeli side in response to the Lebanese proposal is positive, and he will soon return to Beirut."
The source added that "the border demarcation issue will be concluded in September."