BEIRUT, Lebanon, May 27 (UPI) -- Israeli military officials claim Hezbollah is better armed than it was in 2006 as Lebanese forces go on high alert ahead of Israeli border exercises.
Gabi Ashkenazi, the chief Israeli military officer, told the Knesset on Tuesday that Hezbollah militants in southern Lebanon were better equipped now than when they took on the Israeli military in 2006, Israeli newspaper Haaretz reports.
"Today (Hezbollah) has more rockets and long-range ammunition than it did before the Second Lebanon War," he said.
Hezbollah and Israel engaged in a bruising 34-day conflict that saw the militant group able to withstand the onslaught of the Israeli military.
Ashkenazi noted, however, that Hezbollah was constrained by the presence of peacekeepers with the U.N. Interim Force in Lebanon.
UNIFIL and the Lebanese army, meanwhile, went on high alert Wednesday ahead of an Israeli military exercise scheduled for Sunday along the border with Lebanon.
Lebanese news outlet Naharnet cites the Arabic-language National News Agency in Lebanon as saying Lebanese and UNIFIL soldiers dispatched to the southern border as a safeguard against any unforeseen emergency.
Meanwhile, Israeli military equipment was observed near Lebanese territory in what is dubbed Exercise Turning Point 3, which is intended to train Israeli troops in emergency response drills.
UNIFIL stressed earlier the exercise posed no threat to Lebanon.