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Top Hezbollah official blasts US for pushing Lebanon to the brink of collapse, social explosion

Vice President of the Executive Council of Hezbollah Sheikh Ali Damoush

A high-ranking official from the Lebanese Hezbollah resistance movement has slammed the United States for its seditious schemes in Lebanon, stating that Washington is insistently seeking to trigger a “social explosion” as the country’s economic disaster worsens.

Vice President of the Executive Council of Hezbollah Sheikh Ali Damoush made the remarks during his Friday prayer sermon in Lebanon’s capital city of Beirut.

Sheikh Damoush said the US wants to deepen and exacerbate crises in Lebanon, and push the country to the brink of a social explosion, noting that a straightforward example of such an approach is the latest comments by Barbara Leaf, assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs, at an event hosted by the Wilson Center in Washington DC on Friday. 

Leaf said Lebanon will likely have to bear more pain before the impoverished Mediterranean country forms a new government.

“Things will have to get worse before the public pressure mounts in such a way,” that parliament selects a new president, she asserted.

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The senior Hezbollah official said, “We feel relieved as enemies have tried many times in the past to place Lebanon under their guardianship and impose own policies, but have failed in return. As long as we possess the willpower, vigilance, patience and solidarity and are ready to make sacrifices, enemies will go down to defeats.”

Elsewhere in his remarks, Sheikh Damoush pointed to Lebanon’s maritime demarcation deal with Israel, saying, “Due to the presence of the resistance front and strong positions of the nation, Lebanon could establish its oil and natural gas exploration rights without involvement in a military confrontation. Lebanon can tap the reserves in the Mediterranean and implement all clauses of the agreement with the help of Hezbollah and its steadfast people.”

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The top Hezbollah official also touched on the gestures of far-right Israeli political parties and Benjamin Netanyahu’s opposition to the maritime border demarcation deal, dismissing his stance as a political maneuver during last week’s Israeli parliamentary elections in order to please Zionists and garner more votes.

Sheikh Damoush stated that it is unlikely that Netanyahu would take any action against the agreement for fear that it would spark off retaliation from the Lebanese resistance movement and the fact that the popular group enjoys great military capabilities.

“Netanyahu well knows that Hezbollah is fully prepared to impose its own equation on the Tel Aviv regime in case Israeli authorities obstruct exploitation of reserves in the gas-rich Mediterranean Sea,” the top Hezbollah official said.

On Thursday, Hezbollah Deputy Secretary General Sheikh Naim Qassem warned that the resistance movement will punish Israel and bring it back to its senses in case of any foolishness in terms of the maritime border demarcation agreement with Lebanon.

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The second-in-command of Hezbollah reiterated that his group is ready to confront the Israeli regime, and it is the strength and unity in Lebanon that has allowed the crisis-hit country to deal with its problems as well as guarantee the demarcation of its maritime borders.

“If Israel creates an issue in the maritime border demarcation agreement, Hezbollah has enough power to punish and prevent any foolishness [of this regime]," he said.

Israel and Lebanon have technically been at war for decades. Israel invaded Lebanon in 1982 during the latter’s civil war and occupied Lebanese territory until 2000. Israel's last military aggression against Lebanon was in the summer of 2006.

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