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Israel shells Lebanon after cross-border rocket attacks

The Israeli military has fired artillery rounds over the Lebanese border in response to rockets from the other side, Israeli officials said. Tensions spiked after a Hezbollah leader died in an apparent Israeli airstrike.

The Israeli shells hit uninhabited areas of the neighboring country, Lebanese security sources and residents said on Sunday.

The incident comes only hours after at least two "Katyusha rockets" landed in Israeli territory, according to a Lebanese security source cited by the AFP news agency.

No damage or casualties have been reported in the fire exchange.

The Israeli military said it was holding the Lebanese government responsible for the attacks, which allegedly came from the heartland of

the powerful Hezbollah militia.

The army would "continue to act against any attempt to harm Israel's sovereignty and the security of its citizens," the officials said in a statement.

Kantar killing

The cross-border fire follows an

air strike which killed high-profile militant Samir Kantar

in Syria. Hezbollah blames the Israeli airforce for the strike.

Israeli officials refused to either confirm or deny they were behind the attack. At the same time, the authorities welcomed Kantar's demise and said the militant leader was planning attacks on Israel.

Kantar spent almost 30 years in an Israeli prison, after kidnapping and killing an Israeli man and his 4-year old daughter while he was still a teenager.

He was released in 2008, during a prison swap between Israel and Hezbollah.

dj/rc (Reuters, AFP, AP)

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