Lebanon's Hezbollah slams Gulf states over terrorist claims

Lebanon's Hezbollah movement denounced on Thursday a Saudi–led Gulf alliance for its decision to label the pro-Iranian group a terrorist organization.

The Sunni-ruled Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), which comprises Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates, announced the decision on Wednesday and accused Shiite Hezbollah of "hostile acts" against its member countries.

Hezbollah's bloc in Lebanese parliament called the move "aggressive" and blamed Saudi Arabia, Iran's regional rival, for the decision and said the country "will bear the consequences of its decision," without giving further details.

"This decision agrees with the description the Israeli enemy gives to Hezbollah," the bloc added in a statement. 

Lebanon and Hezbollah are technically in a state of war with Israel.

Earlier on Thursday, Iran criticized the GCC step against Hezbollah, calling it a "mistake."

"That was a new mistake and not helpful for the security of stability of the region," Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian told Iran's IRNA news agency.

"Iran is also proud of Hezbollah as the leading front in the fight against the Zionists," he said, a reference to Israel.

Both Iran and Hezbollah support Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in Syria's five-year civil strife. Saudi Arabia and other Gulf monarchies support Sunni rebels fighting to topple al-Assad.

Last update: Thu, 03/03/2016 - 18:29

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