The leader of Hezbollah gave Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad a unique gift to cap off his two-day trip to Lebanon - an Israeli assault rifle captured during the militant group's 2006 war with the Jewish state.
Iran, whose ties to Hezbollah date back nearly 30 years, funds the militant group to the tune of millions of dollars a year and is believed to supply much of its arsenal. Hezbollah boasts widespread support among Lebanese Shiites and runs a virtual state-within-a-state in Shiite areas of the country.
During a visit to the town of Bint Jbeil near the Israeli border on Thursday, Ahmadinejad delivered a speech in which he taunted Israel, saying "the world should know that the Zionists will perish."
Ahmadinejad also warned Israel not to attack Lebanon, saying a new war would "lead nowhere and will shorten the life of the usurping entity."
The American and Israeli governments criticized the visit as an unnecessary provocation.