TEL AVIV (Apr. 22)
An Israel Defense Force soldier was severely wounded in the leg by fragments of a mortar round that exploded near his Golani Brigade patrol in the southern Lebanon security zone Tuesday.
The patrol was passing the ruins of a Crusaders’ stronghold known as Beaufort Castle, near the Galilee panhandle, when it was targeted by Hezbollah gunmen north of the zone.
The wounded soldier was identified as Yaniv Levy of Kibbutz Sdot Yam. He was reported in serious condition at Rambam Hospital in Haifa.
The IDF and its allied South Lebanon Army retaliated with heavy artillery barrages aimed at Hezbollah-occupied villages in southern Lebanon. Two houses in Roumain village, north of Nabatiya, blew up when direct hits were scored, detonating ammunition dumps concealed inside, reports from Lebanon said.
At least two Hezbollah guerrillas were killed. Local reports said Hezbollah men were seen dragging the bodies from the ruins and searching for others.
Reports from Lebanon said the Lebanese and Syrian governments are pressuring the radical pro-Iranian Hezbollah to stop attacking Israeli targets for fear that Israel will be goaded into large-scale reprisals.