France blocking EU from declaring Hezbullah a terror group
France is blocking a European Union consensus on declaring Hezbullah a designated terror organization
The EU has not reached a consensus among its 27 members to include
Lebanon-based Hezbollah in its list of terrorist organizations, a spokesman for
the French Foreign Ministry in Paris said on Wednesday.
of a terrorist organization by the European Union implies that precise legal
conditions are met,” spokesman Philippe Lalliot said, according to the
translated answer obtained by The Jerusalem Post.
“Under the common
position of the Council of the European Union of 27 from December 2001 on the
application of specific measures to fight against terrorism, any application on
the list of terrorist organizations in the EU particularly is subject to a
consensus among Member States. This consensus is not currently met,” he
A reporter at the Foreign Ministry briefing asked Lalliot about a
January Israeli newspaper report detailing Israel’s new efforts to convince
Europe to outlaw Hezbollah because of the group’s terrorist activities. The
reporter cited Ma’ariv saying that “this failure is particularly the position of
France, which would be opposed to such an initiative.”
According to commentators and news reports in Israel, France is
going to great lengths to block any designation of Hezbollah as a terror entity
because it want to preserve its diplomatic leverage in Lebanon. France is also
concerned about Hezbollah retaliation.
The Beirut-based Daily Star
reported Hezbollah’s secretary- general Hasan Nasrallah attacked the US and
Israel for pushing sanctions against his organization. Nasrallah termed
2013 a “very dangerous phase.”
According to the paper, “In the coming
year, we will be facing many challenges as a resistance as the Americans and
Israelis are working to besiege us with efforts to place Hezbollah on the
European Union’s terrorist list, restricting the group’s movement in Latin
America and so on.”
What could go wrong?
Labels: European Union, France, Hezbullah