Hezbollah on 'Spy': 'We Make Mistakes'

Arrest of 'Mossad agent' Mohammad Shawraba was inevitable, top terror leader says, due to the sheer size of the group.

Tova Dvorin,

Hezbollah terrorists (file)
Hezbollah terrorists (file)

Two and a half weeks after Hezbollah arrested a "Mossad agent" it claimed was infiltrating its ranks, the terror organization's second-in-command admitted that the group "makes mistakes." 

Hezbollah leader Naim Qassem stated in an interview to Hezbollah's al-Nur radio station Monday that "no party on the scale of Hezbollah, in terms of its size and sophistication, would be able to continue to stand strong against such a risk," adding that it was a "mistake." 

"Hezbollah had been working hard against spying among its leadership ranks," he added. "Some cases have since been found, but these are few." 

Qassem also said that Hezbollah is "fully capable" of dealing with the consequences of the affair, declining to refer to the "agent" by name.

Hezbollah arrested the informant – Mohammad Shawraba, head of the party’s so-called External Operations Unit - and four junior members last month. Shawraba, 42, is due to be put on trial for his alleged espionage. 

Hezbollah busted Shawraba after five attempts to carry out operations against Israeli targets to avenge Mughniyeh’s 2008 assassination were botched, the source told the newspaper.

Israel never confirmed or denied it killed Mughniyeh, who died in a massive car bomb blast in Syria, but Israeli intelligence services are widely believed to be the most likely party to have targeted the elusive terrorist kingpin.

In what confirms Hezbollah’s direct involvement in a 2012 bus bombing in the Bulgarian tourist city of Burgas that killed the bus driver and five Israeli tourists, the source said Hezbollah’s suspicions of being infiltrated became real when the Bulgarian Interior Ministry accused it of standing behind the attack.

According to a source, Shawraba, 42, informed Israel, which relayed the tip to Bulgaria.