Presence in Syria Greater Than Ever: Nasrallah

Presence in Syria Greater Than Ever: NasrallahPresence in Syria Greater Than Ever: Nasrallah

The head of Lebanon's Shia movement Hezbollah said on Sunday his group was fighting a "critical and definitive battle" in Syria with a greater presence than ever before.

Seyyed Hassan Nasrallah spoke during an event commemorating the death of leading Hezbollah figure Hassan Hussein al-Hajj, known as Abu Muhammad, AFP reported.

According to Al-Manar television, which aired the speech, al-Hajj died on October 10 fighting in Sahl al-Ghab, a strategic plain in northwest Syria where Hezbollah has dispatched fighters in support of the government of President Bashar al-Assad.

Nasrallah said Hezbollah members fought "for 30 years on the border with Palestine and have now gone to Sahl al-Ghab, where Abu Mohammad died, to the borders with (Syrian provinces) Hama, Idlib, Latakia, and Aleppo."

His group's presence in Syria "is larger than ever before --qualitatively, quantitatively, and in equipment, because we are in a critical and definitive battle", he said.

The Hezbollah chief has sent thousands of fighters to support the Syrian army's ground offensives in the country's center, north, and northwest, recently bolstered by Russian airstrikes.

"The two projects -- the Zionist and the takfiri (extremist Sunni) -- want to achieve the same result: destroying our peoples and our societies," he added.