US plans to hold corrupt Lebanese officials close to Hezbollah accountable: Sources

A supporter of Lebanon's Hezbollah gestures as he holds a Hezbollah flag in Marjayoun, Lebanon, May 7, 2018. (File photo: Reuters)

Washington is considering imposing additional sanctions on corrupt Lebanese officials who support Hezbollah, sources in the US State Department told Al Arabiya on Wednesday.

The US is encouraging the international community to hold corrupt individuals in Lebanon accountable by taking serious action toward them, the sources said.

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Washington is determined to hold corrupt Lebanese politicians accountable, to ensure that the demands of the Lebanese nation are fulfilled and to see a transparent and honest Lebanese government formed, the sources added.

The US Treasury Department announced on Tuesday it had designated former Lebanese Transport Minister Yusuf Finyanus and former Finance Minister Ali Hassan Khalil for engaging in corruption, leveraging their political power for financial gain.

Lebanon's Finance Minister Ali Hassan Khalil attends a meeting in Beirut June 19, 2018. (Reuters)

Lebanon's Finance Minister Ali Hassan Khalil attends a meeting in Beirut June 19, 2018. (Reuters)

“Finyanus and Khalil were involved in directing political and economic favors to Hezbollah and involved in some of the corruption that made Hezbollah’s work possible in Lebanon,” David Schenker, assistant secretary for Near East Affairs at the US State Department told a briefing call.

A picture taken on May 23, 2018, shows Public Works Minister Youssef Fenianos arriving at the parliament in the Lebanese capital Beirut. (AFP)

A picture taken on May 23, 2018, shows Public Works Minister Youssef Fenianos arriving at the parliament in the Lebanese capital Beirut. (AFP)

“This should be a message to both to those who cooperate with Hezbollah, those who enable Hezbollah but also to Lebanon’s political leaders,” Schenker said. “Everyone should absolutely expect more designations to come,” he added.

- With Reuters

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Last Update: Thursday, 10 September 2020 KSA 00:05 - GMT 21:05
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