Israel Radio reported Friday afternoon that shells fell at a military outpost in the occupied Sheba farms region.

No immediate reports on casualties were released.  The Hezbollah-affiliated Al-Manar TV said the group attacked the military position along the border in response to earlier Israeli attacks.

The Radio said Israeli soldiers returned fire at the Hezbollah fighters.

Hezbollah denied responsibility for two explosions in the Sheba farms on Thursday evening.

Two explosions heard in Sheba farms

Israel defense minister Shaul Mofaz held Friday the Lebanese government responsible for the latest explosions in the Sheba Farms, but said Israel ‘will not be dragged into an escalation’, Israel radio reported.

Two explosions were heard Thursday night on the Israel-Lebanon border in the Sheba farms area, the Israeli military said.

The military said it was not clear what caused the latest blast – a roadside bomb, a mortar shell or a rocket. No casualties were reported.


The incident is expected to add fuel to the already tense environment at Israeli-Lebanon borders. On Wednesday night, a Katyusha rocket, presumably fired from southern Lebanon, fell on the Israeli town of Shlomi, causing damage to a building but no causalities.

Sheba farm were left under Israeli control following the Israeli withdrawal from southern Lebanon in 2000. The Farms, claimed to be Lebanese territories was left on the Israeli side of the UN-drawn borders over Israeli claims that it belonged to Syria not Lebanon.

A Hezbollah spokesman in Beirut declined to comment, and there was no immediate reaction from the Lebanese government.

United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan, in a statement issued Thursday, condemned the Wednesday Katyusha rocket attack.

Annan said the Lebanese government must impose order within its territory and called on both sides to respect the Blue Line boundary drawn by the UN between Israel and Lebanon.

Israel’s mission to the United Nations will submit a complaint with the Security Council and Secretary General Kofi Annan over the firing of a Katyusha rocket at an Israeli town Wednesday night.

Israeli military believes that the rocket was fired by a Palestinian group, not by Hezbollah.

As a result of the attack, which damaged a local bakery, all Independence Day celebrations in the area were cancelled on Wednesday.

Earlier this week, Israel fired an artillery shell into Lebanon, but said it was fired by mistake. The shell fell in an open area, causing no damage or casualties.