Hezbollah deputy leader: US, Israel responsible for tensions

Hezbollah deputy chief Naim Qassem accuses United States and Israel of being responsible for escalation in the Middle East.

Elad Benari,

Naim Qassem
Naim Qassem

Hezbollah deputy chief Naim Qassem on Monday accused the United States and Israel of being responsible for “the escalation and tensions in the region.”

“The rhetoric being used by this front is a rhetoric of threats and war and this might push things to the brink of confrontation,” Qassem told the UN Special Coordinator for Lebanon Jan Kubis during a meeting, according to the Naharnet news website.

“Hezbollah is working with all Lebanese parties to establish political stability, financial balance and economic recovery,” he continued.

Qassem also claimed that “Hezbollah’s strength and readiness are only aimed at protecting Lebanon and its land and resources.”

Hezbollah, which is supported by Iran and is its Lebanese proxy, is a major political power in Lebanon.

The group and its allies gained more than half the seats of the 128-member Lebanese parliament in the election which took place in May of 2018 and received three ministerial posts in the government formed earlier this year.

Qassem’s comments come amid escalating tensions between the US and Iran, after the US military deployed an aircraft carrier and B-52 bombers to the Middle East. US officials said the move was made to counter “clear indications” of threats from Iran to American forces in the region.