Israel’s Netanyahu says military acts based on Israeli calculations

JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu dismissed reports that the United States had convinced Israel not to expand its military activity during a weekly cabinet meeting on Sunday.

“I have seen false publications claiming that the U.S. prevented and is preventing us from operational operations in the region,” Netanyahu said, without elaborating on the reports. “This is not true. Israel is a sovereign state. Our decisions in the war are based on our operational considerations, and I will not elaborate on that.”

The Wall Street Journal on Saturday reported that Netanyahu was persuaded by U.S. President Joe Biden not to attack the militant Hezbollah group in Lebanon out of concerns it would launch an attack on Israel, similar to the Oct. 7 rampage by Hamas in Gaza on Israel’s southern communities.

Netanyahu insisted on Sunday that Israel’s actions are “not dictated by external pressures.”

“The decision on how to use our forces is an independent decision of the IDF and no-one else,” Netanyahu said.

(Reporting by Emily Rose; Editing by Hugh Lawson)