(photo credit: HO / AL-MANAR TV / AFP)
Speaking on Friday, Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah called on all those who support the Palestinian cause to rally behind it's sponsor and ideological backer, Iran.
In the speech, published on Lebanese news sites, Nasrallah claims that "Iran's enemies are the enemies of Jerusalem. " He further commemorated Iran on International Quds day, and called the Islamic Republic and its support for "resistance movements" the "only hope left for this region, after God."
Nasrallah, whose forces have been fighting on behalf of embattled Syrian President Bashar Assad, another of Iran's allies, has routinely championed the Palestinian cause, this time tying his rhetoric to his group's ongoing fight against Sunni militants, such as the Nusra Front and the Islamic State, in neighboring Syria.
"Our fighters who fall in Syria are dying for the sake of the resistant Syria, Lebanon and Palestine," and "if Syria is lost, Palestine would be lost."
The leader of the Lebanese Shi'ite militia also implicated Iran's Arab foes - such as Saudi Arabia - in his lambasting of Israel, asserting that the expanding and bloody rift between Sunni and Shia Muslims in the region is a false narrative built by Arab governments who are complicit in neglecting the fight against Israel.
"Any talk of a Shiite crescent a lie fabricated by the corrupt Arab system, which has abandoned Palestine."
Using the Iranian-Shi'ite alliance's term for groups such as the Islamic State and al-Qaida, Nasrallah alleged that Israel and its Arab bedfellows knows and sponsor the "takfiri scheme", which "is destroying the countries that [Israel] wants destroyed."
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Yet despite the presence of Iranian personnel in Iraq, Syria as well as Yemen, Nasrallah refuted the existence of Iran's own designs, which he sardonically calls a "Persian scheme" and denyied that Tehran aims to control the region.
Not even the ongoing nuclear talks between world powers and Iran immune from Nasrallah's scorn.
The possible implementation of the negotiations, currently underway in Vienna, were flouted by Nasrallah if they were to include the recognition by Iran of Israel.
"If the entire nuclear deal hinges on the precondition of acknowledging Israel as a state, the Iranian republic and its people would never accept such a condition," said the Shi'ite cleric, "because they would be renouncing their religion if they accept such a stance.
Nasrallah then re-attributed the label often applied to his outfit back onto Israel, calling it "the root of terrorism," and an "entity that was established by terrorist organizations."|
Hezbollah is recognized by the United States and Israel as a terrorist organization, but its political branch is left off similar blacklists in the European Union.
Late last month an affiliate of Hezbollah was arrested in Cyprus after some 8.2 tons of ammonium nitrate was found in a home outside the city of Larnaca.
Hussein Bassam Abdallah, 26, who held dual Lebanese-Canadian citizenship, was sentenced to six years imprisonment after pleaded guilty to stockpiling explosives to attack Jewish targets abroad.
Abdallah regularly traveled to Cyprus to check on the ammonium nitrate. His latest instructions before his arrest on May 27 were to find a warehouse to store it, and his handler gave him a forged British passport, Reuters contributed to this report.
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