Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah on Tuesday firmly rejected accusations of betrayal by French President Emmanuel Macron, noting meanwhile that the Resistance party is still committed to the French initiative “but based on respect”.
In a televised speech via Al-Manar, Sayyed Nasrallah clarified fallacies made regarding the formation of the new government in Lebanon and Paris’ initiative regarding the current crisis.
He stressed, in this context, that Macron is welcome in Lebanon “as a friend and ally, not as a guardian of our country.”
His eminence also stressed that Hezbollah has been well known for his credibility and sincerity, calling on the French president to “ask the friend and the enemy” about this issue.
Sayyed Nasrallah affirmed, meanwhile, that excluding Hezbollah from taking part in the new government is “out of question”.
Elsewhere in his speech, Sayyed Nasrallah hit back at Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu who claimed that Hezbollah allegedly has a missile factory near a gas station south of the capital, Beirut.
The Hezbollah S.G. said the party’s Media Relation Office would hold a tour for media outlets’ reporters to head to the area Netayahu had spoken about in a bid to refute lies of the Israeli PM.
Sayyed Nasrallah, meanwhile, hailed the Lebanese Army for foiling attacks by terrorists in the country’s north, warning that the terrorists have been preparing for a major military action in Lebanon.
Emir of Kuwait Demise
Sayyed Nasrallah started his speech by offering condolences over the demise of Emir of Kuwait Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah.
His eminence praised Kuwait monarch for his role in stopping the civil war in Lebanon, noting that he also stood by Lebanon and contributed to reconstruction of Lebanese towns following the Israeli war on Lebanon in July 2006.
“Emir of Kuwait also adopted an honored stance on Palestine and Al-Quds,” Sayyed Nasrallah said, praising Sheikh Al-Sabah for not striking a deal with the Zionist entity echoing other Arab states.
North Lebanon Confrontations and ISIL Revive
Tackling the latest confrontations between the Lebanese Army and Takfiri terrorists in the country’s north, Sayyed Nasrallah described the Lebanese soldiers as heroes, hailing the Lebanese people for standing by the Lebanese Army.
His eminence warned that Lebanon is facing a threat of major military action by ISIL terrorist group.
“We appreciate the popular stance in the northern villages where people voiced support to the army and security forces.”
In this context, Sayyed Nasrallah said that since the assassination of Iranian Major-General Qassem Suleimani, head of the elite Quds Force and Deputy Commander of Iraq’s Hashd Shaabi paramilitary force, US has been working hard to revive ISI in the region.
He called for caution and awareness regarding this threat, urging the Lebanese people to rally behind the Lebanese Army and security forces.
Sayyed Nasrallah Hits back at Netanyahu
His eminence then hit back at Netanyahu claims that a facility south of Beirut allegedly contains Hezbollah missiles, calling on media outlets to tour the area.
“Lebanese media outlets are called upon to tour in the area at 22:00 today in a bid to refute Netanyahu’s lies.”
“We position our missiles neither in Beirut Port nor near a gas station, we know very well where can we preserve our rockets,” Sayyed Nasrallah stated, referring to similar claims by Israeli media shortly after the deadly explosion at Beirut Port on August 4.
Tackling the state of alert on the Lebanese-Palestinian border, Sayyed Nasrallah reiterated an earlier threat to retaliate to the martyrdom of Hezbollah fighter Ali Mohsen in Damascus earlier in July.
“Israeli occupation army has been on alert at the border with Lebanon for more than two months in the longest period of mobilization since 1948.”
Ex-PMs Setting Conditions on Gov’t Formation
Turning to the government issue, Sayyed Nasrallah stressed that Hezbollah has been facilitating the formation of the new government following the resignation of caretaker PM Hassan Diab’s government earlier last month.
He said that four ex-PMs Saad Hariri, Fuad Siniora, Najib Mikati and Tammam Salam formed a club in which they were setting conditions on Hezbollah and his allies, noting that they were leading the negotiations in this regard instead of the PM-designate Mustapha Adib, who recused himself from his mission last Saturday.
His eminence mentioned some of the conditions set by the ex-PMs: number of ministers in the government will be limited to 14, portfolios will be rotated and the ministers will be named by them.
In addition to taking the role of the PM-designate, Sayyed Nasrallah noted that the four ex-PMs were also going beyond the authority of President Michel Aoun who has the right to take part in the formation process.
In this regard, Sayyed Nasrallah said that Hezbollah repeatedly asked the ex-PMs if such conditions were stipulated by the French initiative, noting that the answer was no.
Excluding Hezbollah from the Gov’t ‘Out of Question’
Sayyed Nasrallah noted that Hezbollah did not agree on the process of naming the ministers, stressing that the Resistance party did not commit to follow a random government and to hand over the country to it.
In this issue his eminence said that Macron was asking the parliamentary majority in Lebanon to hand over the power to the minority, noting that this contradicts the principle of democracy.
Sayyed Nasrallah affirmed here that Hezbollah won’t accept to be excluded from the government, noting that this behavior aimed at defending the back of the resistance in the country and at preventing further collapse of Lebanon on the economic and financial levels.
Betrayal Accusations ‘Rejected’
Hezbollah S.G. hit back at Macron, rejecting his latest remarks when he accused the Lebanese parties of ‘betrayal and blamed Hezbollah and Amal movement of foiling the French initiative.
Sayyed Nasrallah then addressed Macron by saying: “We did not attack any one, we defended our land against the Israeli occupier. We went to Syria upon the request of the government there to fight those militants whom your state consider terrorists.”
“What are the promises which we did not keep? Our credibility and sincerity is well known to our enemies and our friends. Betrayal accusations are unacceptable and condemned.”
“If you want to know who foiled your initiative look for the US which imposed sanctions, and look for Saudi King Salman and his speech at the United Nations General Assembly,” Sayyed Nasrallah said addressing the French president.
In this context, Sayyed Nasrallah noted that Hezbollah stance since the beginning of the French initiative was to welcome and to facilitate such efforts, but stressed that Macron’s rhetoric of superiority is not accepted.
“You are welcome as a friend and an ally, not as a guardian and prosecutor who defends the interest of certain Lebanese camp,” the Hezbollah S.G. said.
He concluded this part of his speech by maintaining that Hezbollah is still committed to the French initiative, voicing readiness to hold discussions in this regard “but on base of respect.”
Bahraini People and Deals with ‘Israel’
Sayyed Nasrallah then praised the Bahraini people who took to streets to protest against the Manama regime’s decision to hold so-called peace deal with the Zionist entity.
“We appreciate the moves of the Bahraini people who despite oppression by the regime took to streets and voiced opposition to any deal with the Israeli enemy.”
Hi eminence also said that Hezbollah relies on the stance of the people of the Arab countries and their popular will to oppose their regimes and refuse deals with the Israeli enemy.