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Nasrallah attacks Al Arabiya for reporting death of Hezbollah members in Syria

Published: Updated:

Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah on Tuesday attacked Al Arabiya TV, claiming that the station was contributing to a “psychological war” on the Lebanese militant group.

He also described the fallen members of his militia, who had went to aid Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in his brutal war against his own people, as “martyrs”.

“Yesterday, Al Arabiya television carried a story by its private sources that said 30 martyrs have fallen [in Syria],” Nasrallah said during a speech broadcast live. “This is silly. It is being used as part of a psychological war. They have spoken without knowledge.”

Nasrallah accused Al Arabiya TV, along with other regional stations, of exaggerating the number of deaths of Hezbollah members in Syria.

“I added all the numbers [of deaths reported by Arab stations], they amount to about 1,000 martyrs. Take half of that, how can we hide the burial of 500 martyrs? Lebanon is a very small country.”

“Wherever a martyr has fallen, his family is notified and a funeral procession takes place the next day. All martyrs will have a funeral procession that is announced… we are not ashamed of our martyrs.”

Nasrallah admitted on Tuesday that Hezbollah members were inside Syria.

“Syria has true friends in the region who will not allow Syria to fall into the hands of the United States, Israel and ‘takfiri’ groups,” he said, in a reference to Sunni Muslim groups battling the regime of President Assad.

“If the situation gets more dangerous, states, resistance movements and other forces will be obliged to intervene effectively in the confrontation on the ground,” he added.

“You [Syrian rebels] will not be able to bring down the regime militarily,” Nasrallah said. “The battle is still long.”

The Syrian opposition has repeatedly said that the Lebanese Shiite group is fighting with Assad forces. However, Hezbollah has said that its presence in the country was to defend Shiites and Lebanese border towns.

The United Nations has said that at least 70,000 people, most civilians, have been killed in the two-year uprising against Assad.