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The New Arab Staff

Israeli warplanes fly low over Beirut terrorising Lebanese

Israel regularly violates Lebanon airspace, often to carry out strikes in neighbouring Syria [Getty]

Date of publication: 11 January, 2021

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Security sources and witnesses said Israeli jets flew several times over the capital at medium altitude, according to local media.
Israeli warplanes carried out several low flying sortees over Beirut and parts of Lebanon on Sunday, as its drones buzzed overhead, in what has become a daily violation of Lebanese airspace and UN Security Council resolutions.

Security sources and witnesses said Israeli jets flew several times over the capital at medium altitude, Lebanon's Daily Star reported, with memories of Israel's airstrikes on Beirut and other cities.

Other aircraft, jets, and drones, flew over south Lebanon, with warplanes also overflying areas north and east of Beirut, the local daily added, terrifying the local population.

The frequency of low flying warplanes over the capital has intensified in the last two weeks, making residents jittery as tensions run high in the region during the final days of President Donald Trump's administration.

Many fear conflict may erupt in the area before Trump leaves office in retaliation for the US killing of Iranian commander Qassem Soleimani in Iraq last year, or to scuttle the chances of the incoming Joe Biden administration of negotiating a settlement with Iran.

Many in Lebanon took to social media to voice their frustration.

"When the drone leaves, the warplanes come. When the warplanes leave, the drones return. They have seen us in our PJs, filmed us in our PJs and surveilled us in our PJs. Now what," one Twitter user said.

"Of all types of panic I experienced in life in Beirut, the panic that accompanies the Israeli warplanes flying this low in Beirut is very special," tweeted another user, who added that it brought back memories of the 2006 war with Israel.

Israel regularly violates Lebanon airspace, often to carry out strikes in neighbouring Syria.

The United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon says Israel enters Lebanese airspace on a daily basis in violation of UN resolutions and the country's sovereignty.

Between June and October 2020, UNIFIL recorded a daily average of 12.63 airspace violations, totaling 61 hours and 51 minutes in flight time, a significant increase from the previous four months. Drones accounted for approximately 95 percent of the violations, UNIFIL said.

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