Feb 16, 2:33 PM EST

Israel warns Hezbollah after threats to hit reactor

AP Photo
AP Photo/Mohammad Zaatari

JERUSALEM (AP) -- Israel warned Lebanon's Hezbollah on Thursday against attacking the Jewish state after the leader of the Iranian-backed militant group threatened to strike its nuclear reactor.

The comments by Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah marked the first time his group explicitly threatened to target the reactor in the southern Israeli town of Dimona.

Israel and Hezbollah battled to a stalemate during a monthlong war in the summer of 2006. The war broke out after Hezbollah gunmen crossed into Israel and captured two Israeli soldiers. The ensuing conflict killed about 1,200 Lebanese and 160 Israelis before ending in a United Nations-brokered cease-fire.

"If Nasrallah dares to fire at the Israel homefront or at its national infrastructure, all of Lebanon will be hit," Yisrael Katz, Israel's Minister of Intelligence, said in response to Nasrallah's threats.

The Israel-Lebanon border has remained mostly quiet since the 2006 war but there have been sporadic outbursts of violence.

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