Hezbollah raps Saudi-crafted OIC statement
Officials from Lebanon’s Hezbollah resistance movement have strongly criticized the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) for leveling accusations against the group as well as Iran.
At the end of its latest summit on Friday, the OIC issued a statement accusing Hezbollah of backing terrorism and causing instability in the Middle East.
The statement, which was not issued with consensus and was not endorsed by regional heavyweight Iran, also included anti-Iran articles.
On Sunday, Hezbollah lawmaker Hassan Fadlallah dismissed the OIC statement during a memorial service in south Lebanon for a Hezbollah fighter killed in Syria.
“The accusations and statements that were recently issued by the Organization of Islamic Cooperation have no value or effect. They will never change anything in our choices and they will never be able to prevent us from continuing on our path,” Fadlallah said.
Lebanese Hezbollah fighters have been fighting alongside the Syrian army against the Takfiri militant groups that are wreaking havoc in the region and that are supported by Saudi Arabia, a member of the OIC.
Mohammad Raad, who chairs Hezbollah’s political wing Loyalty to the Resistance Bloc in the Lebanese Parliament, also slammed the OIC for claiming that Iran is interfering in the affairs of some Arab states, and blamed Saudi Arabia for exerting pressure on the organization to adopt such a stance.
“If this is the standard for what is considered to be interference in Arab affairs, what is Saudi Arabia doing in Syria, Yemen and Egypt? What is Saudi Arabia doing in Lebanon?” Raad said in the memorial event.
Saudi Arabia has been engaged in a deadly military campaign against Yemen since March 26, 2015 in an attempt to reinstate former President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, who is a Saudi ally and who had previously resigned. Over 9,400 Yemenis, including 4,000 women and children, have been killed in the Saudi war so far.
Saudi Arabia is widely seen to have bought its way into taking over two strategic Red Sea islands from Egypt, which reportedly gave them away for USD 20 billion in Saudi aid.
Riyadh has also adopted a raft of hostile measures against Lebanon in reaction to the latter’s refusal to side with Riyadh against Iran, retracting a $4-billion aid pledge to Lebanon earlier this year.
Meanwhile, Hezbollah’s Shariah Council Head Sheikh Mohammad Yazbek condemned the OIC’s statement and said the movement would never be defeated militarily.
“We are ready to confront with everything we have and to extend our offerings for the sake of Islam, our dignity, our family and our people,” Yazbek said on Saturday.
The 13th OIC summit opened in Istanbul on Thursday under the theme “Unity and Solidarity for Justice and Peace.” The OIC’s statement was issued without the consensus of the organization’s member states.
The OIC’s anti-Hezbollah move comes following similar actions by the Arab League and the [Persian] Gulf Cooperation Council, which have labeled the resistance movement a terrorist group. Hezbollah blames Saudi Arabia for exerting pressure on other Arab countries to take such stances.