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Canada now advising against all travel to Lebanon amid Israel-Hamas conflict – National


Canada is now advising against all travel to Lebanon due to a “deteriorating security situation” and fears Israel’s conflict with Hamas may spread in the region.

Ottawa updated its travel advisory to the country to “avoid all travel” from “avoid non-essential travel” Wednesday night. It’s joining allies like the United States and France in calling on citizens to stay away from Lebanon for the time being.

“Avoid all travel to Lebanon due to a deteriorating security situation, civil unrest, the increased risk of terrorist attack and the ongoing armed conflict with Israel,” Ottawa said.

“The security situation can deteriorate further without warning. In the event that the armed conflict intensifies, commercial means to depart the country may be impacted. The Government of Canada’s ability to provide consular services during an active conflict, including evacuation of citizens, may be limited.”

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Click to play video: 'Biden to deliver prime-time speech on Israel-Hamas conflict from Oval Office'


Biden to deliver prime-time speech on Israel-Hamas conflict from Oval Office


The government added that Canadians currently in Lebanon should consider leaving while commercial means are still available.

Hezbollah, an Iranian-backed militant group based in southern Lebanon, has been exchanging fire with Israel’s military at the border in recent days, igniting worries of a wider conflict in the area as the country prepares to launch an expected ground offensive against Hamas.

Hamas, a militant group based in Gaza, carried out a surprise deadly attack in southern Israel Oct. 7 that shook the Middle East and has left thousands dead on both sides in the aftermath: 1,400 dead from the attack in Israel, and roughly 3,000 dead in Gaza, according to authorities for both.

Hezbollah warned its adversaries on Wednesday it was “thousands of times stronger” than before. Israel and Hezbollah went to war in 2006, and the current fighting at the border is the deadliest since then.

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Click to play video: 'Montreal’s Lebanese community on edge after Ottawa issues advisory against non-essential travel'


Montreal’s Lebanese community on edge after Ottawa issues advisory against non-essential travel


The United States has warned Iran, which also backs Hamas, against getting involved in the crisis, and deployed two aircraft carriers in what officials called a “deterrence posture.”

Reuters reported that Hezbollah official Hashem Safieddine, in a speech to thousands of supporters, said U.S. President Joe Biden, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and “malicious Europeans” should be careful.

“The response to the mistake you might make with our resistance will be resounding,” he said Wednesday.

“Because what we have is faith, and God is stronger than you, all your battleships, and all your weapons,” he said, speaking at a rally called in response to a blast that killed hundreds of people at a Gaza hospital.

Hamas blamed Israel for the massive blast at the al-Ahli Hospital — saying nearly 500 died — while Israel blamed a rocket misfired by other Palestinian militants.

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Hezbollah said two of its fighters were killed in south Lebanon on Wednesday and a third was in serious condition.


Click to play video: 'Hezbollah ‘fully ready’ to carry out action when time comes, deputy chief says'


Hezbollah ‘fully ready’ to carry out action when time comes, deputy chief says


The group said it had attacked five locations on Wednesday, including an Israeli barracks in Zar’it and a position across the border from Lebanon’s Ras Naqoura area, using guided missiles in several of the strikes.

The Israeli army said it was responding to shots fired at its military posts in the area of Zar’it, and also responding after militants fired anti-tank missiles toward Israel’s Kibbutz Manara and Rosh HaNikra near the border.


Click to play video: 'Hezbollah involved in fighting on Israel-Lebanon border'


Hezbollah involved in fighting on Israel-Lebanon border


The army said it would “continue to strike terror targets belonging to the Hezbollah terrorist organization.”

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Israel’s defence minister said on Oct. 15 that Israel had no interest in waging war on its northern front, and that if Hezbollah restrained itself then Israel would also keep the situation along the border as it is.

— with files from Reuters

&copy 2023 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.





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