Apr 02,2008 00:00
JERUSALEM -- Israel is concerned Syria has transferred chemical weapons to Hezbollah, while Syria has braced for an invasion, analysts said.
Israeli officials decided Wednesday to redistribute biochemical masks on intelligence suggesting Syrian officials might transfer biological or chemical weapons to the military wing of Hezbollah in Lebanon, the Jerusalem intelligence reporting bureau, DEBKAfile said.
The Arabic-language al-Quds al-Arabi newspaper based in London quoted officials in Damascus as claiming the Israeli military is preparing for a large-scale attack on Syria, prompting the call-up of Syrian reservists and various other military preparations, Ynetnews reported Wednesday.
Israeli officials called for nationwide security exercises during April 6-10 and the Israeli defense minister, Ehud Barak, said Tuesday that Hezbollah should not "test us" following reports of a "great deal of activity" along Israel's northern border with Lebanon.
The DEBKAfile report says Damascus fortified the highway from Beirut to Damascus for fear of an Israeli invasion, though the al-Quds piece says Hezbollah decided against escalations over the alleged killing of Imad Mughniyeh, a top Hezbollah security official, for fear of provoking Israel.
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