Lebanese Prime Minister Sa’ad Hariri addressed several countries at a conference in Rome, asking for financial support so that the Lebanese Armed Forces can increase its presence along the border between Lebanon and Israel.

Lebanese Israeli border

Lebanese Israeli border Photo Credit: Basel Awidat/Flash90

On Thursday, Lebanese Prime Minister Sa’ad Hariri claimed that Israel is the largest threat to Lebanon as he addressed representatives of around 40 countries and the United Nations Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, at a conference in Rome, Italy. The conference was aimed at establishing financial support for Lebanon’s Armed Forces.

Hariri stated that Israel “remains the primary threat to Lebanon,” as he informed the members of the conference that Lebanon will be increasing military presence along its border with Israel. The UN Security Council allows for 15,000 Lebanese troops to be deployed along the border between Israel and Lebanon since the end of the 2006 Second Lebanon War.

The support of the Lebanese Armed Forces and Lebanese security forces can be interpreted as a way for the international community to keep the Hezbollah terrorist group, which has helped sway the Syrian civil war in President Bashar Al-Assad’s favor, from expanding its authority in Lebanon.

The international concern over Syria since the outbreak of the civil war has led to severe tensions between Israel, Iran, Russia and the US. The threat of Iranian presence, which backs Hezbollah, in Syria poses a great threat to Israel’s security.