Saudi Halt of Aid to Lebanon Aimed at Hezbollah

Saudi Halt of Aid to Lebanon Aimed at Hezbollah

A lawmaker said the recent Saudi decision to cut billions in military aid to Lebanon is aimed at damaging the Lebanese resistance group Hezbollah, but such measures will bear no fruits for Saudis.
In an interview with ICANA on Saturday, Seyyed Baqer Hosseini, a member of the National Security and Foreign Policy Commission, said Saudis believe that Hezbollah and its ally, Iran, are responsible for its failures in the region, including Syria.
"It seems that Saudi Arabia is seeking to harm Lebanon's military power to increase pressure on Hezbollah and Iran," he said.
Saudi Arabia suspended a $3 billion package to the Lebanese Army and the remainder of a $1 billion in aid to its internal security forces last month.
The decision, announced on Feb. 19, comes following recent victories by the Syrian Army, backed by Lebanon’s Hezbollah resistance fighters, against the militants fighting to topple the Damascus government.
Hosseini said Saudis will not succeed in reaching their objectives because Lebanon is strong.
"The Lebanese Army has proven its power to deal with [terrorist] enemies."
The Lebanese Army is fighting militants from the Al-Qaeda-linked Nusra Front and the self-styled Islamic State terrorist group near the country’s northeastern border with Syria. Hosseini also stressed Iran's readiness to provide Lebanese Army with military support.
"Fortunately, in recent years, defense cooperation between the two countries have been growing and future prospects are bright," he said.
Lebanese Defense Minister Samir Moqbel said on Wednesday Lebanon had informed Iran of a decision to study Iran's past offer to support Lebanon's Army at a Cabinet meeting on Thursday.
In a related development, the (Persian) Gulf Cooperation Council, which comprises Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the UAE, Oman, Bahrain and Kuwait, has designated Hezbollah as a terrorist group.


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