Hezbollah condemns Arab League’s blacklisting as ‘aggression’
The Lebanese resistance movement Hezbollah says a recent move by the Arab League to designate the group as a “terrorist organization” is tantamount to a “declaration of aggression” by Saudi Arabia.
Lashing out at Riyadh’s aggressive stance toward Hezbollah, Sheikh Naim Qassem, the deputy secretary general of the resistance movement, said in a Saturday speech that the Saudi regime is striving to affirm that Hezbollah is a terror group in “all the forums that allow it to make this move.”
“It is putting pressure on others at the Arab foreign ministers meeting to do the same,” he said during his address in the eastern city of Baalbek.
The Saudi opposition against Hezbollah stems from the group’s ability to inflict defeat upon the Israeli regime, its commitment to Islamic unity, as well as Hezbollah’s solidarity with the people of Yemen, Syria and Iraq who are suffering oppression at the hands of Saudi Arabia, Hezbollah deputy leader said, noting that the blacklisting bid would only make stronger the movement’s “confidence and steadfastness.”
The comments were made in reaction to a Friday decision by the Arab League to brand Hezbollah a “terrorist” group. However, Lebanon and Iraq refused to go along with the move and expressed “reservations” about it, which was approved nearly by all members of the pan-Arab body.
The [Persian] Gulf Cooperation Council officially added Hezbollah and all affiliated groups to its so-called list of “terrorist” organizations on March 2. The council comprises Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, Bahrain and Kuwait.
Reacting to the decision, Hezbollah described the GCC member states as “reckless and hostile”, blaming Saudi Arabia for the decision.
The move by the six-nation Arab bloc followed Riyadh’s decision to halt its USD 4 billion in aid to Lebanese security forces in the wake of recent victories by the Syrian army, backed by Hezbollah fighters, against the Takfiri militants fighting to topple the Damascus government.
Hezbollah Secretary General Seyyed Hassan Nasrallah has said the Saudi regime seeks to instigate “strife” between Shias and Sunnis in the region, urging the Lebanese not to be intimidated by threats posed by Riyadh and Tel Aviv.