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Friday, 11 March 2016 19:21

Iraq, Lebanon defy fellow Arab League states over Hezbollah

Iraq, Lebanon defy fellow Arab League states over Hezbollah
Iraq and Lebanon have refused to go along with a decision by fellow Arab League members to declare Lebanon's Hezbollah resistance movement a "terrorist" group.

"The resolution of the League's council (of foreign ministers) includes the designation of Hezbollah as a terrorist group," the body said in a statement read out at a news conference on Friday by Bahraini diplomat Wahid Mubarak Sayar.

However, Lebanon and Iraq expressed "reservations" about the decision which was approved nearly by all members of the pan-Arab body.

The decision came after the [Persian] Gulf Cooperation Council officially added Hezbollah and all groups affiliated to its so-called list of “terrorist” organizations on March 2. The [P]GCC comprises Saudi Arabia, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Oman, Bahrain and Kuwait.

Reacting to the decision, Hezbollah described the [P]GCC member states as “reckless and hostile”, blaming Saudi Arabia for the decision.

The decision by the [P]GCC to blacklist Hezbollah has been met with opposition and criticism with Algeria refusing to classify the movement as a terrorist organization.

Palestinian resistance movement, Islamic Jihad, also praised Hezbollah as a resistance movement which has a history in the struggle against the Israeli regime as well as in supporting the Palestinian cause. Iran, Syria and Yemen's Ansarullah movement have also slammed the move by the [P]GCC.

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