Not a week ago, the United Kingdom had declared Iran-backed Hezbollah a terrorist organization. Germany stated that it won’t follow Britain’s lead, a decision that may fuel tensions with Saudi Arabia and the USA. Minister of State Niels Annen told Der Spiegel, a German news magazine, that the Shi’ite Muslim Islamist movement had an important clout on Lebanese society and the EU had already added its military wing to a list of proscribed groups in 2013. On Friday 8 March, Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah said about other nations following Britain’s steps on a televised speech: “Despite all that is said and done, they will be disappointed. Their actions will not be able to make us poor, hungry or isolated. Those that support us will continue in their support – be they countries, people or our people and the people of resistance in Lebanon.” Germany’s Annen rejected U.S. criticism on his nation doing too little to combat Iran’s influence in the region and said Berlin’s foreign policy remained focused on finding political solutions even in tough situations, said the Middle East Monitor article. Also, Germany’s refusal to ban Hezbollah as a whole could add to tensions with Riyadh over its leadership of a coalition fighting the Iran-backed Houthis in Yemen, and the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
- The Euromed news are edited by the team of the Euro-Mediterranean Policies Department of the European Institute of the Mediterranean -