TEL AVIV (Oct. 19)
Seven Israeli soldiers were killed and eight wounded, four of them seriously, in a suicide car-bomb attack Wednesday on the Lebanese border, the Israel Defense Force announced.
The incident, in which two Lebanese women were also injured, occurred at noon local time, just north of Metullah. The news was withheld for eight hours, pending notification of the soldiers’ next of kin.
According to official accounts, a white Toyota believed to contain about 330 pounds of high explosives was detonated in the middle of an IDF convoy in Lebanon, less than 300 yards from the border fence.
The occupant, who was blown up with the car, was driving southward toward the Israel border.
The vehicle overtook an IDF convoy of six jeeps and a Ford pick-up truck, which was traveling slowly after completing a routine mission in the southern Lebanon security zone The vehicles were extensively damaged.
Army sources suggested the explosives could have been concealed in the car at any one of a number of villages in the security zone.
Gen. Dan Shomron, the IDF chief of staff, rushed to the scene. He told reporters that several car-bomb attempts had been made on IDF troops in recent months, all of them foiled.
In Lebapon, the pro-Iranian extremist Shiite group Hezbollah claimed credit for the attack.