MIDDLE EAST

An Arab blockade of Iran's Hezbollah

A political and legal decisiveness on the part of the Arab world is besieging the Lebanese Hezbollah party, which is affiliated to the Iranian Revolutionary Guards. There is a wall being built which is getting stiffer and higher with every passing minute.

Hours after the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries declared Hezbollah, its branches, affiliates and leaders as “terrorist group” – without separating the military and political wings like the Europeans, the Council of Arab interior ministers agreed with the decision. Lebanon and Iraq, however, were not party to this decision.

These Gulf and Arab measures are not going to end at this point. The Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) must also take a decision so that any subsequent international effort in this direction stands on solid grounds.

Hezbollah’s was rightly described during the Arab interior ministers’ statement in Tunisia as an entity that is “destabilizing the Arab region.” It is adept at establishing terror networks and outlawed gangs, diffusing toxic propaganda and training murderers all over the Arab world. Probably its worst is yet to come.

It is just that the mask has now fallen off, revealing the threat posed by Iran to the security of the Arab world and many other countries around the Islamic world.

Similar response

Hezbollah’s reaction to the announcement was expected to be similar to that of its allies. Through its parliamentary bloc – The Loyalty to the Resistance Bloc – it targeted Saudi Arabia even though the decision was taken by the entire GCC. It was alleged that the GCC’s decision is a starting point for the development of Saudi-Israeli relations.

The Palestinian Islamic Jihad movement denounced the decision to ban Hezbollah. In its political council statement, Yemen’s Houthis said the decision is “reckless and serves the interests of the angry Zionist entity and its tools in the region.”

The Arab problem with Hezbollah is that it is a source of military training and permanent internal strife, especially with its attempts to monopolize Shiite representation across borders

Mshari al-Thaydi

“Lebanon’s Hezbollah is the vanguard of resistance against the Zionist regime (Israel) and Iran is proud of the group,” Iranian state TV quoted Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian as saying.

Gulf countries had considered charging Hezbollah with terrorism in 2013 but a consensus could not be developed. However, latest developments show that Gulf citizens, including Kuwaitis, have started to sense the threat Hezbollah poses to regional security.

The Arab problem with Hezbollah is that it is a source of military training and permanent internal strife, especially with its attempts to monopolize Shiite representation across borders.

Hezbollah is now under Arab siege. Hassan Nasrallah’s numerous speeches are of no use in this situation. The matter at hand is more serious than mere speeches.

This article first appeared on Asharq al-Awsat on Mar. 04, 2016.
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Saudi journalist Mshari Al Thaydi presents Al Arabiya News Channel’s “views on the news” daily show “Maraya.” He has previously held the position of a managing senior editor for Saudi Arabia & Gulf region at pan-Arab newspaper Asharq al-Awsat. Al Thaydi has published several papers on political Islam and social history of Saudi Arabia. He appears as a guest on several radio and television programs to discuss the ideologies of extremist groups and terrorists.

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Last Update: Sunday, 6 March 2016 KSA 11:41 - GMT 08:41
Disclaimer: Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not reflect Al Arabiya English's point-of-view.
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