HomeTop StoriesThousands of Iran-backed fighters ready to join Hezbollah's battle with Israel as...

Thousands of Iran-backed fighters ready to join Hezbollah’s battle with Israel as UN chief warns of catastrophe ‘unimaginable’

  • Thousands of Iranian-backed fighters are ready to join Hezbollah in its fight against Israel.

  • The Israeli army has approved plans for a possible offensive in Lebanon.

  • The UN Secretary General warned of an “unimaginable catastrophe” if the conflict escalates.

Thousands of Iranian-backed fighters are poised to join the militant group Hezbollah in Lebanon as tensions rise with neighboring Israel, the Associated Press reported.

In a speech Wednesday, Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah said militant leaders of the Iran-led “axis of resistance” have offered to send tens of thousands of fighters to support Hezbollah as the group’s clashes with Israel threaten to turn into an all-out war. .

“We thanked them, but we are overwhelmed by the numbers we have,” Nasrallah said, according to the AP, adding that Hezbollah already had 100,000 fighters in its ranks.

A May 2020 Atlantic Council report stated that Hezbollah had approximately 30,000 active fighters and up to 20,000 reserves at the time.

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An unnamed official from an Iran-backed group in Iraq told the AP in Baghdad that if there were an all-out war, “we will (fight) shoulder to shoulder with Hezbollah,” adding that some advisers from Iraq are already in Lebanon goods. .

Hassan Nasrallah

Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah.Hussein Malla / AP images

Hezbollah has launched attacks against Israel in support of the Palestinian militant group Hamas since the latter’s attacks on October 7, which killed around 1,200 people in Israel.

Israel has hit back hard against the group, targeting its commanders and infrastructure in southern Lebanon.

Israel is also considering all-out war with the group, with Defense Minister Israel Katz saying on Tuesday that a decision on such a move was near.

“We are very close to the moment when it is decided to change the rules against Hezbollah and Lebanon. In an all-out war, Hezbollah will be destroyed and Lebanon will be severely affected,” Katz wrote on X.

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It came as the IDF announced plans had been approved for an ‘offensive’ in Lebanon.

UN Secretary-General António Guterres said on Friday that an escalation of the conflict would have devastating consequences.

“Let us be clear: the people of the region and the people of the world cannot afford for Lebanon to become another Gaza,” he said.

“One rash move – one miscalculation – could trigger a catastrophe far beyond the pale, and frankly, beyond the imagination,” he said.

A report from the Center for Strategic and International Studies think tank published in March said that even if Israel were to achieve a decisive defeat of Hezbollah in an all-out war, it would likely “not lead to the group’s destruction, given the deep roots in Lebanon and strong support from Iran.”

Read the original article on Business Insider

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