Hezbollah slams Obama for Syria sanctions
Hezbollah on Saturday slammed US President Barack Obama's decision to extend sanctions against Syrian nationals accused of undermining stability in Lebanon as "blatant interference in Lebanese affairs."world Updated: Aug 01, 2009 19:27 IST
Hezbollah on Saturday slammed US President Barack Obama's decision to extend sanctions against Syrian nationals accused of undermining stability in Lebanon as "blatant interference in Lebanese affairs."
"Hezbollah also sees the renewal of sanctions as a highly aggressive act and a continuation of the logic of imperial arrogance," said Lebanon's Shiite militant group.
Hezbollah said Obama was carrying on the foreign policy of his predecessors that provided a "cover for the crimes of the Israeli enemy." The decision amounted to "blatant interference in Lebanese affairs."
Despite the easing of some trade sanctions against Damascus, Obama on Thursday decided to extend for one year sanctions against Syrian or pro-Syrian personalities for allegedly provoking instability in neighbouring Lebanon.
The sanctions were first imposed on August 1, 2007 by then US president George W Bush, who froze the assets of individuals accused of undermining Lebanon's sovereignty on Syria's behalf.
Although Lebanese-Syrian ties have improved over the past year, with the launch of diplomatic relations for the first time, Obama said "the actions of certain persons continue to contribute to political and economic instability in Lebanon."
Such actions also constituted a threat to US national security and foreign policy.
Syria, a supporter of Hezbollah, wound up an almost three-decade troop deployment in Lebanon in 2005 under international pressure after the assassination of Lebanese ex-premier Rafiq Hariri in a massive Beirut bombing.
Damascus has denied charges of involvement in the murder.