Iran, Lebanon sign 5-year security pact

Lebanese source: Iran intends to supply Lebanon with defensive weapons. (The Media Line)

ahmadinejad making point 224.88 ap (photo credit: )
ahmadinejad making point 224.88 ap
(photo credit: )
Iran and Lebanon have signed a security agreement, according to which Iran will supply the Lebanese army with weapons and equipment over the next five years, the London-based daily A-Sharq Al-Awsat reported. The agreement between the two nations was signed during Lebanese President Michel Suleiman's two-day visit to Teheran, which ended on Tuesday. The visit focused on security and defense cooperation, as well as on regional and international matters of mutual concern, an Iranian source revealed to the paper. "Iran announced its readiness to supply Lebanon with defensive weapons, to be agreed upon in the framework of a defensive strategic system the Lebanese will formulate," a Lebanese source said. The two sides agreed to conduct ministerial visits to Teheran and Beirut in the near future. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad also promised to visit Beirut soon, added the Lebanese source. During his visit, Suleiman was accompanied by the ministers of foreign affairs, interior, labor, economy and trade, industry, and expatriates. Each of the ministers met with his Iranian counterpart to discuss mutual interests. By supplying the Lebanese army with weapons, Iran will thus be responsible for arming Lebanon's two major armed forces: the national army, and Hizbullah, The Media Line's analysts indicate. Since the summer war of 2006 between Israel and Hizbullah, the Lebanese Islamic resistance movement has tripled its force, Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak said earlier this week. Hizbullah now holds 42,000 missiles and rockets, which it received from Iran, some of which can reach Israel's nuclear reactor in Dimona, almost 300 kilometers south of the Israeli-Lebanese border, Barak said.