Lebanon must act on Hezbollah in Yemen, says Saudi

A Houthi militant shouts slogans as he stands next a poster of Lebanon's Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah during a rally against U.S. support to Saudi-led air strikes, in Yemen's capital Sanaa, February 19, 2016.

A Houthi militant shouts slogans as he stands next a poster of Lebanon’s Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah during a rally against U.S. support to Saudi-led air strikes, in Yemen’s capital Sanaa, February 19, 2016.


A Saudi military spokesman urged Lebanon on Wednesday to stop the Shiite Lebanese movement Hezbollah from exporting its “mercenaries” to Yemen and Syria, Al Arabiya News Channel reported.

Brigadier General Ahmed al-Asiri said participation of some Iranian and Hezbollah “mercenaries,” who were killed in Yemen, violated the U.N. resolution 2216, which demanded an end to violence in the southern Arabian Peninsula country.

Asiri made his statements after the internationally recognized Yemeni government on Wednesday said it has evidence that the Lebanese Shiite movement Hezbollah is backing the Houthi militia group.

The government, which is currently working with the Saudi-led Arab coalition and Popular Resistance units to dislodge Houthi militants from the capital and other areas, said that Hezbollah military trainers planned ‘hostile’ acts implemented by Houthis against Saudi Arabia.

The government has evidence of “Hezbollah’s involvement in the Houthi war against the Yemeni people,” its spokesman Rajih Badi said in a statement published by the official sabanew.net website.

Hezbollah militants are present in “the battlefields along the border with Saudi Arabia,” where attacks from Yemen have killed about 90 civilians and soldiers in the kingdom since March last year, said Badi.

Hezbollah is taking part in the Yemeni war on the ground by training the Shiite Houthis and orchestrating attacks against Saudi Arabia, said Badi, urging “international legal measures” against the movement.

“This evidence is documented and Hezbollah cannot deny its role in the destruction it is contributing to through the clear moral and logistic support” for the rebels, said Badi.

The Yemeni government added that it will file a complaint at the UN Security Council against what it called Hezbollah’s ‘terrorist’ acts.

Both Hezbollah and the Houthis are backed by Iran.

The Yemeni government statement comes after Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Kuwait warned or banned their citizens against travel to Lebanon.

Saudi cut its $4 billion military aid to Lebanon after Beirut’s failure to back Saudi in its spat with Shiite powerhouse Iran, the leading backer of Hezbollah.

Saudi is currently leading a coalition against the Houthis, who attempted a coup against the internationally recognized Yemeni government of Abdrabbu Mansour Hadi.


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