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Lebanon must reinforce defensive power

The Lebanese Parliament has called for enhancement of the country’s defensive power amid intensified Israeli rhetoric against the Hezbollah movement.

Parliamentary spokesman Nabih Berri on Saturday said both the country’s army and its resistance movement Hezbollah had to be reinforced “to stress that the nation’s borders, safeguards the homeland,” the Lebanese portal Naharnet reported.

“The Resistance is a necessity and a national need,” he added.

The movement countered Israeli offensives in 2000 and 2006. Some 1,200 Lebanese, most of them civilians, were killed in the 33-Day War of 2006.

President Michel Sleiman on Saturday said the current “regional atmosphere full of dangers and the drumbeats of war that Israel is banging everyday” prove that Hezbollah must remain armed.

Israel has recently escalated its military presence near the Lebanese border and has claimed that Syria is supplying Hezbollah with Russian-made Scud missiles.

Lebanese, Syrian and Hezbollah leaders have denied the accusation, describing the claim as a move to wage war in the region.

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