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Israeli Report Refutes War Crimes Accusations in Lebanon


An Israeli research institute with strong ties to the military says it has evidence to prove that Hezbollah used human shields in southern Lebanon during its war with Israel earlier this year.

The head of the Intelligence and Terrorism Information Center says his private institute has compiled a report of evidence against the guerrilla group. He says the report can be used to rebuff war crimes allegations in connection with Israel's offensive in Lebanese residential areas.

Lebanon, as well as international rights groups, say Israel killed mostly civilians by firing indiscriminately into populated areas during the fighting.

But the report says that as many as 600 Lebanese who were killed during the war were from Hezbollah.

The report says Hezbollah deliberately operated in civilian areas. It includes declassified documents, photos and video footage to support its claims.

A Hezbollah official says the Israeli report is untrue.

About 1,000 Lebanese were killed during the month-long war between Israel and Hezbollah, which ended in August.

The war started after Hezbollah abducted two Israeli soldiers in a cross-border raid. Israel invaded Lebanon to find the soldiers and disrupt arms shipments to the Shi'ite group.

Some information for this report was provided by AP.

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