Lebanon asks EU not to blacklist Hezbollah

Lebanon asks EU not to blacklist Hezbollah
Fri Jul 19, 2013 10:40:41

Lebanese President Michel Suleiman has told the European Union that it must not label the Islamic resistance movement Hezbollah a terrorist organization.

The Lebanese president made the remarks in a statement issued by his office on Thursday, four days ahead of an important EU foreign ministers meeting.

Suleiman had "asked the foreign minister to notify the European Commission and member states of the government's request, and not to place Hezbollah, an essential component of Lebanese society, on the list of terror organizations," the statement said.

He told the EU in the statement not to take "any decision… in a precipitate manner, and without being based on objective and irrefutable proof."

EU foreign ministers are likely to discuss on July 22 whether to add the military wing of Hezbollah to their list of terrorist groups, a move the EU has avoided so far despite intense US, UK and Israeli pressure.

Earlier this month, Britain renewed its efforts to get Hezbollah on the EU’s terror list, but France, Italy and Germany are still reluctant to back the British move.

On June 4, EU counter-terrorism specialists met on the issue but failed to reach an agreement.

Last year, the EU flatly rejected an Israeli call to blacklist Hezbollah as a terrorist group.

The EU regards Hezbollah as an active political party in Lebanon. It says there is not enough evidence to warrant listing the Lebanese group as a “terror group.”

Led by France, European countries argue that their relations with Lebanon, where Hezbollah provides extensive social services and its political wing holds government power, would be damaged by the designation.

Currently, among the 27-EU member states, only the UK and the Netherlands are in favor of adding Hezbollah to the EU list of terror.


string(686) "[{"id":"1486390","sort":"3055015","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2013/06/20/alalam_635073539689039951_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Israel irked by EU refusal to blacklist Hezbollah"} ,{"id":"1487833","sort":"3055016","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2013/06/25/alalam_635077720870200251_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Hezbollah slams Takfiris’ violence in Lebanon"} ,{"id":"1495189","sort":"3055017","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2013/07/15/alalam_635095239563689761_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"EU still deadlocked on blacklisting Hezbollah"} ,{"id":"1495667","sort":"3055018","contenttypeid":"21","pic":"/2013/07/17/alalam_635096482403199065_25f_4x3.jpg","title":"Iran's Rohani backs Syrian nation, Hezbollah"} ]"