CBNNews.com - JERUSALEM, Israel - Israel Defense Forces (IDF) officials rejected claims by Hezbollah spiritual leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah that his group is holding body parts of Israeli soldiers killed in the Second Lebanon War.
In his first public appearance since September 2006 on Islam's Ashoura holiday, marking the death of the prophet Muhammad's grandson, Imam Hussein, Nasrallah embellished previous allegations that Hezbollah is holding body parts of Israeli soldiers.
"Oh Zionists, your army is lying to you...They were so weak on the field that they left behind remains not of one, two or three, but a large number of soldiers...Your army has left the body parts of your soldiers in our villages and fields, which Hezbollah collected," Nasrallah said. "I am not talking about regular body parts. I tell the Israelis we have the heads of your soldiers, we have the heads, the hands, the feet and even a nearly intact cadaver from the head down to the pelvis," he said.
In a response released Saturday night, the IDF said Nasrallah's "despicable conduct" reflected his "evil cynicism."
"Nasrallah is trampling the basic code of ethics of human respect. Hezbollah's actions are against basic codes held dear by many religions, including Islam," the statement read.
Defense officials said Nasrallah's speech was intended to stir up the Israeli public, with an eye to a prisoner exchange.
But Israeli officials say all 119 Israeli casualties from the war were buried in accordance with Jewish law, and there will be no negotiations with the Lebanese-based terror group over alleged body parts.
Nasrallah continues his cat-and-mouse games regarding the whereabouts and well-being of Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev, the IDF reservists kidnapped during the cross-border attack that sparked the 34-day war.
Sources: The Associated Press, The Jerusalem Post, israel insider