TEL AVIV (Jun. 14)
As combat continued in southern Lebanon, two Hezbollah gunmen were killed and two Israeli soldiers very lightly wounded last Friday in a clash just beyond the northern edge of the border security zone.
An army spokesman reported that an Israel Defense Force patrol had encountered the terrorists near Beit Leif village, but U.N. and Lebanese reports put the scene of the incident, which involved seven Israeli tanks, as near Sribbine village, about a half-mile north of the zone.
The army spokesman denied that the patrol had crossed the zone border, but a spokesman for the Northern Command confirmed that an eight-hour incursion north of the zone had taken place.
However, he added that it could not really be described as a “normal incursion” but rather a “business as usual patrol” that went beyond the zone, “to clean out an area in which we thought there might still be some Hezbollah terrorists wandering around.”
The Northern Command spokesman explained that the zone border is not demarcated on the ground, “and it is not as though we broke down any border stations to get where we got.”