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Israel warns Hezbollah against targeting gas facilities

Israel will consider targeting its infrastructure as "a declaration of war by Lebanon and Syria", Israel's Minister of National Infrastructure, Energy and Water Resources, Yuval Steinitz, announced on Wednesday.

Hezbollah recently issued flyers and a video threatening Israel's offshore gas platforms with attack, as rhetoric escalates on both sides over the ownership of lucrative gas fields located at the Israeli-Lebanese maritime border.

"The close cooperation between the Syrian regime and Hezbollah makes them a one entity," Steinitz said in a press statement, stressing that "Israel does not seek war."

"Israel would start a battle, if necessary, to prevent Syria from becoming an Iranian base that arms Hezbollah with precision rockets," he warned.

Read: Lebanon tells army to confront Israeli aggression on land, sea borders

The Israeli minister stressed that Israel seeks a diplomatic solution for the dispute with Lebanon over the territorial and maritime boundaries, but warned any aggression will be met with force.

"I think both Israel and Lebanon are interested in a diplomatic solution. They should not make any threats, though, and definitely not infiltrate our economic waters," he noted.

"Israel is more or less the world champion in anti-missile technology," he said, warning "if, heavens forbid we are attacked the response would be a lot more severe, quick and unequivocal than in the past."

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