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Israel says uncovers Hezbollah unit led by notorious commander

Israel says uncovers Hezbollah unit led by notorious commander

The United States and the worldwide community do not recognize this act and consider the Golan occupied.

Daqduq's mission was deliberately concealed from the Assad regime because Assad is focused on restoring his regime's stability in southern Syria and does not want to provoke Israel into launching attacks, Israeli intelligence officers said.

He said he would return to the USA with a mission to get the U.S. to recognize Israeli sovereignty over the territory.

The army said the unit was in the establishment and recruitment stage and was not yet operational.

In 2012, Daqduq was released by Iraq due to lack of evidence after being accused of plotting to kill five United States soldiers in the Iraqi city of Karbala.

Hezbollah began establishing it in the summer of 2018, it said.

While he was captured by the British SAS in Basra in March 2007 and spent five years in prison, he was released by the Iraqi government in 2012 despite strong protests from Washington.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said "what we've uncovered today is just the tip of the iceberg. We know a lot more", he continued. But the military believes that Daqduq and his terror cell is aiming to build up its capabilities to one day launch serious attacks against Israel. "Israel knows where you're doing it", he said in a video message.

A masked gunman holds up a Hizbollah flag
A masked gunman holds up a Hizbollah flag Credit Reuters

"The world's greatest and most important superpower understands what the left in Israel is finding hard to accept", said Shlomo Ne'eman, head of the Gush Etzion Regional Council, in response to the change of language in the annual report.

"I personally can not imagine a situation in which the Golan Heights will be returned to Syria".

He was sent to Iraq in 2005 after Iran asked Hezbollah to form a group to train Iraqis to fight coalition forces in the country and helped train and advise the militants in Jaysh al-Mahdi, now known as Asa'ib Ahl al-Haq.

These displays of support for Israel's sovereignty over the Golan Heights come ahead of the early election in Israel, which is scheduled for 9 April.

Israel seized much of the Golan Heights from Syria during the 1967 Six-Day War and then effectively annexed it in 1981, a move that was never recognised by the global community.

The announcement also comes amid a new push by Netanyahu to have Israel's sovereignty over the part of the Golan it has occupied since 1967 recognised internationally.

On Tuesday Israel's Mako news site quoted acting Foreign Minister Israel Katz as saying that a recognition of the Golan Heights as Israeli would be "an appropriate and required response" to the allegations about Hezbollah's activity on the Syrian Golan.

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