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Saudi Arabia’s normalization with Israel poses direct threat to Lebanon: Senior Hezbollah official

Sheikh Nabil Qaouk, the deputy chief of Hezbollah's executive council, speaks at a ceremony in the southern Lebanese town of Bint Jbeil on June 13, 2022. (Photo by al-Ahed news website)

A senior official from the Lebanese Hezbollah resistance movement has censured Saudi Arabia’s back-channel attempts to normalize diplomatic relations with Israel, emphasizing that the establishment of ties between Riyadh and Tel Aviv regimes will constitute a direct threat to Lebanon.

“Resistance is a strategic necessity to deter the [Israeli] enemy and support the country, its dignity and wealth. Close relations between Saudi Arabia and the Zionist regime pose a direct threat to Lebanon, Palestine, Syria as well as all honorable nations,” Sheikh Nabil Qaouk, the deputy chief of Hezbollah's executive council, said at a ceremony in the southern Lebanese town of Bint Jbeil on Monday.

Back on May 30, Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid said the Tel Aviv regime is coordinating with the United States and Persian Gulf nations on a process to normalize and establish full diplomatic ties with Saudi Arabia.

“We believe that it is possible to have a normalization process with Saudi Arabia. It’s in our interest,” Lapid told Army Radio.

“We’ve already said that this is the next step after the [so-called] Abraham Accords to talk about a long and careful process,” he added, referring to the 2020 normalization deals that Israel reached with the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Morocco and Sudan under former US president Donald Trump.

Lapid warned that the process of normalization with Saudi Arabia would be a lengthy one with progress coming in small steps, asserting that both sides have security interests at stake.

Elsewhere in his remarks on Monday, Sheikh Qaouk underscored that the United States is hell-bent on placing intolerable economic and financial burdens on Lebanon in order to bring the country to its knees in the face of Israeli demands.

He went on to blame the United States for the worsening crises in Lebanon, stating that problems have gotten worse in the cash-strapped Arab country due to submission to US demands.

The Hezbollah official noted that insistence on pleading for US support has spiraled Lebanon's financial crisis out of control, and sank the country into economic collapse.

“Following the [May 15] parliamentary elections, Lebanon has a real opportunity ahead of itself to tread the path towards a real and effective solution. The roadmap starts with quicker formation of a new government as time once lost cannot be regained. Lebanese people are really fed up with divisions and discords. They want to see faster process aimed at salvaging the country,” Sheikh Qaouk pointed out.

“We reiterate our desire to work with all zealous parties in order to form a responsible government, which would not capitulate to the hostile stances of the United States and Saudi Arabia,” he said.

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