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Gulf States to Sanction Hizbullah Members

Gulf Cooperation Council to take action against Hizbullah loyalists because of the group's involvement in the Syrian war.
By Elad Benari
First Publish: 6/11/2013, 5:45 AM

Hizbullah supporters in Lebanon (illustrative)
Hizbullah supporters in Lebanon (illustrative)
AFP/Mahmoud Zayyat

The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) will take action against Hizbullah loyalists living in the GCC countries, a statement issued by the council said on Monday.

“The GCC will take measures against [those] in the GCC countries affiliated with Hezbollah in regards to their residencies as well as their financial and business transactions,” said the statement which was quoted by Al Arabiya.

The Gulf countries condemned Hizbullah’s involvement in the Syrian crisis, which according to United Nations figures has led to the death of at least 80,000 people since March 2011.

They said the terror group’s interference in the Syrian conflict shows Hizbullah’s “real nature and goals,” adding its behavior is illegitimate.

The statement called on the Lebanese government to “shoulder its responsibilities towards Hizbullah and [the party’s] illegal and inhumane behavior in Syria and the region,” reported Al Arabiya.

Lebanon has officially adopted a policy of disassociation in Syria’s conflict, but the country is divided along sectarian lines that have been emphasized by the conflict in neighboring Syria. The war in Syria has spilled over into Lebanon several times.

Hizbullah terrorists publicly led a 17-day assault on the Syrian town of Qusayr near the Lebanese border that ended up with its recapture from the rebels last week.

Last week, the Gulf states indicated they would consider taking measures against Hizbullah if the Shiite terror group continues its involvement in Syria’s civil war or interferes in Gulf Arab affairs.

One of the states, Bahrain, recently became the first Arab country to blacklist Hizbullah as a terrorist organization and later banned opposition groups from having contact with the organization.