Israeli jets strike Beirut and Bekaa

Israeli warplanes have continued their raids on Lebanon, hitting a historic lighthouse in densely-populated west Beirut and killing one man in the eastern Bekaa Valley.

    Truck burns after it was hit by an Israeli air strike in Baalbeck

    The disused lighthouse in the heart of the Lebanese capital was hit by Israeli strikes on Thursday, damaging the top of the French colonial-era structure.

    Local television showed live video of the damage, with part of the tower's roof blown off.

    The strike was the first on Beirut proper since Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, the secretary-general of Hezbollah, issued a warning to Israel on August 4, saying that his fighters would fire rockets at Tel Aviv if Israel hit the Lebanese capital.

    An Israeli drone also fired a missile into a minibus driving in the eastern Bekaa Valley, killing one person and wounding 12, residents said.

    The attack occurred near the town of Rayak, about 5km east of the provincial capital of Zahle.

    Another air strike targeted a road linking the city of Baalbek, traditionally a Hezbollah stronghold, with the Syrian city of Homs, witnesses said.

    Leaflets

    Israeli warplanes also dropped leaflets over northern Lebanon for the first time on Thursday, warning trucks off a coastal road linking Lebanon to Syria, residents said.

    The single page document read: "Any pick-up or truck of any kind moving on the coastal road as of 8pm (1700GMT) will be attacked because it is suspected of carrying rockets, military hardware and saboteurs.

    "You must know that anyone who moves in a pick-up or truck is endangering his life."

    The leaflets fell north of Tripoli, Lebanon's second largest city, about 25km from the Syrian border. The area that was leafleted includes the Palestinian refugee camp of Beddawi.

    It was unclear whether the curfew would be 24-hours a day, starting on Thursday night, or whether it was only a night-time ban on traffic.

    The leaflets were signed:"The State of Israel."

    Missiles
     
    Meanwhile, a rocket fired by Hezbollah hit a house in northern Israel on Thursday, killing two people, including a toddler.

    Emergency services said that the rocket, among at least 50 launched into Israel from Lebanon before noon, struck the Israeli Arab village of Deir al-Assad in the Galilee region.
       
    News reports said the child killed in the attack was two years old. No details on the second fatality were immediately available.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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