JERUSALEM, March 25 (Reuters) - Israel’s government on Sunday officially named last year’s conflict with Hezbollah guerrillas "The Second Lebanon War".
The cabinet approved the name after relatives of some of the 117 Israeli soldiers and 41 civilians killed during the fighting lobbied for the inscription of the word "war" on their headstones as a fitting tribute.
Lebanon’s Hezbollah guerrilla group, which abducted two Israeli soldiers in a deadly border raid on July 12 sparking the 34-day conflict, calls the war "The Divine Victory". Ordinary Lebanese generally refer to it as the "July War".
About 1,200 people, most of them civilians, were killed in Lebanon, Lebanese officials have said. Some 270 Hezbollah guerrillas, 15 other gunmen, 35 Lebanese soldiers and police and five U.N. peacekeepers were among the dead.
Israeli cabinet minister Yitzhak Cohen said the government chose "The Second Lebanon War" because the name "had sunk into the public consciousness" — although Israel never designated as a war its 1982 offensive in Lebanon.