Israel eyes Iran's missile production

Nov. 25, 2003 at 8:01 AM
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JERUSALEM, Nov. 25 (UPI) -- Israel is eyeing Iran's mounting production of short- and medium range rockets, with fears they could be deployed from southern Lebanon.

The rockets in Hezbollah's current arsenal have a range of 50 miles, and if fired from locations near the northern border could hit targets as distant as Haifa, Ha'aretz said Tuesday.

In the Gaza Strip, meanwhile, Hamas recently tested a new, longer-range model of its Qassam rocket, which could place the city of Ashkelon within range.

In ceremonies marking Jerusalem Day, observed in Iran as well as by Tehran's allies abroad, pro-Iranian Hezbollah leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah warned Friday his organization would strike deep within Israel in response to Israeli attacks in Lebanon.

After Israeli troops withdrew from southern Lebanon in May, 2000, Iran supplied thousands of rockets to Hezbollah. The longest-range rockets now in Hezbollah's arsenal have a 450-pound warhead, Ha'aretz said.

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