Lebanon Current Affairs
The Arab League has declared Lebanese movement Hezbollah, a Shia political organisation a terrorist group. The move comes after the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) had adopted the same stance.
Decision in this regard was taken during the Arab League Foreign Ministers’ meeting at the organisation’s seat in Egypt’s capital Cairo. All-22 Arab League members supported the decision except Lebanon and Iraq expressed reservations.
Hezbollah (Party of God) is a Shia political organisation created by Iran’s Revolutionary Guards in the 1980s. It was established with an armed wing during Lebanon’s civil war from 1975 to 1990. Currently, it is fighting in Lebanon’s neighbouring Syria to support the Government of President Bashar al-Assad.
The United States, Canada and Australia already have listed Hezbollah as a terrorist group and the European Union (EU) has also blacklisted its military wing.
The EU has decided to put the armed wing of Hezbollah on its list of terrorist organizations. It was made clear that it would maintain contact with all political parties in Lebanon, including the Hezbollah party, which is part of the country’s government.
Why Hezbollah has been added to terrorist list?
EU ministers took the decision at a foreign affairs council after a few EU countries with troops in Lebanon or with sizeable communities there felt reassured by the proposed wording, which also includes a review of sanctions against Hezbollah’s military wing in six months time.
- Britain has led the efforts to impose sanctions on Hezbollah, saying it has evidence that the group was involved in the terrorist attack in the coastal Bulgarian city of Burgas a year ago.
- Information regarding a foiled terrorist attack in Cyprus similar to the one perpetrated in Bulgaria also added to the pressure to blacklist Hezbollah.
- The governments of the US, Netherlands, France, Gulf Cooperation Council, U.K., Australia, Canada, the European Union and Israel classify Hezbollah as a terrorist organization.
About Hezbolla :
It is a Shi’a Islamic militant group and political party based in Lebanon. The organization has been called a state within a state.
It was conceived by Muslim clerics and funded by Iran following the Israeli invasion of Lebanon and was primarily formed to offer resistance to the Israeli occupation.
It receives military training, weapons, and financial support from Iran, and political support from Syria.
It has now grown to an organization with seats in the Lebanese government, a radio and a satellite television-station, and programs for social development.
Its leaders were followers of Ayatollah Khomeini, and its forces were trained and organized by a contingent of 1,500 Iranian Revolutionary Guards that arrived from Iran with permission from the Syrian Government.Its paramilitary wing is regarded as a resistance movement throughout the Arab and Muslim worlds and is considered more powerful than the Lebanese Army.
It has taken the side of the government in the Syrian civil war and in May–June 2013 successfully assisted in the recapture of the strategic town of Qusayr.
Hezbollah’s four main goals:
- Israel’s final departure from Lebanon as a prelude to its final obliteration.
- Ending any imperialist power in Lebanon.
- Submission of the Phalangists to just rule and bringing them to trial for their crimes
- Giving the people the chance to choose with full freedom the system of government they want while not hiding its commitment to the rule of Islam.