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Last Updated: Sunday, 7 November, 2004, 17:03 GMT
Hezbollah drone flies over Israel
Israeli jet fighter
Hezbollah accused Israeli warplanes of violating Lebanese airsapce
The militant Lebanese group Hezbollah has flown a reconnaissance drone over Israeli territory for the first time.

A statement issued by Hezbollah said it came in response to repeated Israeli violations of Lebanon's airspace.

Hezbollah said its unmanned craft overflew a number of areas in northern Israel before returning to Lebanese territory.

The Israeli military has confirmed the flight, saying the craft had flown over western Galilee.

In its statement, Hezbollah said a reconnaissance drone of the Islamic Resistance, the group's military wing, carried out its first flights over "occupied northern Palestine".

It added that it had passed over "several Zionist settlements" before "reaching the coastal settlement of Nahariya and returning safely to its base".

However, an Israeli military statement identified the drone as "an Iranian UAV (unmanned air vehicle) operated by the Hezbollah terror organisation".

Israeli military sources told the AFP news agency that the craft had later crashed in southern Lebanon.

Correspondents say it is not clear whether the drone was a homemade, makeshift aircraft or bought from abroad.

Hezbollah has not described its capabilities.

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