Daily Israel Report

Nasrallah: Islamic State an 'Existential Threat' to the Region

In a speech, Hezbollah leader warns that Islamic State is menacing Lebanon and the whole region.
By Elad Benari, Canada
First Publish: 8/16/2014, 12:59 AM

Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah
Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah
AFP photo

Hezbollah leader Hasan Nasrallah is greatly concerned about the Islamic State (IS), formerly known as ISIS.

A day after he said in a meeting with the Lebanese Druze leader that IS is planning “on expanding toward Jordan and Saudi Arabia”, Nasrallah said in a speech on Friday that the group is an “existential threat” menacing Lebanon and the whole region.

“The Lebanese need to be aware of this existential threat and the need to confront it,” Nasrallah said during the televised speech to mark the end of the 2006 war with Israel, according to the Daily Star.

“We must find true, realistic and serious means to counter this threat,” he added.

Nasrallah said IS is now selling oil and receiving funding from regional groups, adding that this “raises serious questions.”

“Therefore, let’s gather our forces and strong points to counter those threats,” he was quoted as having said.

Nasrallah said fighting the terrorist threat did not require “national consensus.”

“Logic, our religion, ethics and experience have taught us that if a society is facing an existential threat, the priority becomes to counter that existential threat and whoever fails to do so expose their people to danger and slaughtering,” he said, according to the Daily Star.

Nasrallah said supporting the Lebanese Army and supplying it with qualitative weapons was a primary and primordial requirement toward countering the looming dangers.

"The [IS] project does not have a future in our region," he said. "Yes, we have the ability to defend our country. Yes, we have the ability to defeat this project."

Nasrallah also claimed in the speech that there was a fresh conspiracy to redraw the map of the Middle East, headed by Israel and extremist groups, namely IS.

Nasrallah mocked the suggestion to expand the mandate of the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon to include the borders with Syria in the east and the north to safeguard the country from the threat of terrorist groups, saying the peacekeeping force in south Lebanon was “barely capable of defending itself.”

(Arutz Sheva’s North American desk is keeping you updated until the start of Shabbat in New York. The time posted automatically on all Arutz Sheva articles, however, is Israeli time.)