Iran revolutionary guards_390.
(photo credit: Raheb Homavandi/Reuters)
DUBAI - Iran condemned on Tuesday the European Union's
decision to put the armed wing of Lebanese militant group Hezbollah on its
terrorism blacklist and said the move "will be to be benefit of the illegitimate Zionist regime and its supporters."
Hezbollah was set up with the help
of Iranian funds and military advisers some three decades ago and, along with
Syria, is still Tehran's most important ally in the region, positioned as it is
on the "frontline" with Iran's sworn enemy Israel.
Pressed by Britain and
the Netherlands, the European Union blacklisted Hezbollah's military wing on
Monday over accusations it was involved in a bus bombing in Bulgaria that killed
five Israelis and their driver a year ago, and its deployment of thousands of
fighters to help Syrian President Bashar al-Assad turn the tide of Syria's civil
Many EU capitals had previously resisted lobbying from Washington
and Israel to blacklist the group, warning such a move could fuel instability in
the Middle East, especially in Lebanon where Hezbollah is part of the Lebanese
government and has dominated politics in Beirut in recent years.
label a resistance group which has campaigned against invasion and occupation
and has a legal presence with the people's support in the government of Lebanon
shows it is based on loose logical foundations," Iranian Foreign Minister Ali
Akbar Salehi said in a statement on the ministry website.
was accomplished with the direction of some influential members of the European
Union and is contrary to all political and legal norms, surprising and
unacceptable," he said.
Israel, which welcomed the EU decision, would be
the main beneficiary, the Iranian foreign minister said.
will be to be benefit of the illegitimate Zionist regime and its supporters."
While there may be a softening of Iran's tone towards Israel once outgoing
hardline Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is replaced with moderate
President-elect Hassan Rouhani on August 4, Tehran's official hostility to the
Jewish state is very unlikely to change.