Lebanese PM says escalation of Israel-Hamas war could plunge Middle East into chaos

An escalation of the war in Gaza could plunge the whole region into chaos, Lebanon's caretaker prime minister has stated. Najib Mikati added that he is working to ensure his country does not enter the Israel-Gaza war, amid escalating cross-border exchanges between Lebanon-based Hezbollah and Israel.

“I see that there is a real race between a ceasefire in Gaza and escalation, because escalation is not only affecting Lebanon, and I fear that escalation will spread to the whole region, plunging the Middle East into chaos,” Mikati said in a video interview with AFPTV.

As the war in Gaza intensifies, Hezbollah continues firing rockets toward Israel and Israeli strikes target southern Lebanon, Mikati also stressed his country is at the “heart of the storm … but has lived through all the wars of the region and, on the contrary, Lebanon has been the most resilient”.

Lebanon has also been the site of protests as thousands rallied in support of Palestinians in Gaza following Israel’s siege and strikes on the enclave.

Mikati also told AFP news agency in an interview that he is doing his duty to prevent Lebanon from entering the war.

“For now Hezbollah has managed the situation rationally and wisely, and the rules of the game have remained constrained to certain limits,” Mikati stressed.

Amid the conflict in the Gaza Strip between Israeli troops and Hamas, tension has flared along the border between the Israeli-occupied territories and Lebanon, with exchanges of fire between Israeli forces and Hezbollah.

Hezbollah and the Israeli regime have been exchanging sporadic fire since October 8, a day after the Zionist regime started bringing the Palestinian territory of the Gaza Strip under a relentless and indiscriminate war.

The Lebanese resistance movement has announced the group’s “guns and rockets” were with Palestinian fighters, and stressed that it will intensify its attacks against Israel if necessary.

Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant has recently told senior Israeli officials that Hezbollah is “ten times stronger than Hamas”, Israel’s Kan public broadcaster has reported.

US President Joe Biden and his aides have advised Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu not to launch pre-emptive strikes against Hezbollah in Lebanon, The New York Times daily newspaper has reported.

Hezbollah has already fought off two Israeli wars against Lebanon in 2000 and 2006, forcing a humiliating retreat upon the Tel Aviv regime’s military in both cases.

The resistance movement has vowed to resolutely defend Lebanon in case of any Israeli-imposed war.

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