Worthy Christian News » Israel-Palestinian Conflict » Beirut Backs Hizb'allah Terrorism
In yet another example of Arab leaders advocating terrorism and violence to settle disagreements, Lebanese Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri said Lebanon has the right to fight for and "liberate by all means available" the disputed Sheba Farms area, including cross-border attacks by Hizb'Allah.
The United Nations has accepted Israel's position that the future status of Sheba Farms is a matter for negotiations between Israel and Syria. However, Hariri insisted in an interview, to be published today in the London-based JANE'S DEFENSE weekly, "the Lebanese government is fully convinced that the Sheba Farms area is Lebanese territory." He noted that Syria has remained silent on the matter, but Israeli intelligence sources have said the silence is merely intended to give Hizb'Allah a pretext for on-going attacks on the IDF on the Mount Dov slopes adjacent to the farms.
In one of his more contradictory statements, Hariri said, "Things are not as they used to be in the 1980s. Wars in that era did not solve the problems, but made things worse. Now if [the Israelis] wage a war, Hizb'Allah will escalate its attacks."
Hariri denied reports of "differences" between the Lebanese government and Hizb'Allah terrorists on the constructiveness of the Shi'ite militias continued operations in the south. He also declined to directly address the issue of the Lebanese army disarming the group and deploying to fully secure the entire border with Israel. "There are no problems between Hizb'Allah and the Lebanese government. When Israeli forces withdraw from all of south Lebanon, Hizb'Allah guerrillas will disarm themselves and weapons will naturally go to the Lebanese authorities," Hariri said.
On the possibility of Israel launching air strikes against Syrian military bases in Lebanon or Lebanese infrastructure in retaliation for future attacks by Hizb'Allah, Hariri seemed to reverse his position on the necessity of violence, saying: "If Israel carries out military operations against Lebanon, it will only complicate the situation because these operations will increase the scale of violence. The solution cannot be reached through violence but only by resorting to political dialogue."
Hariri added that statements by new Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and other Israeli officials "lead to a pessimistic conclusion about peace prospects in the region. The peace process has not reached its objective because the Israelis are not yet ready for peace... and we cannot wait," said Hariri. "When Israel is ready [for peace], we'll be ready."
Used with Permission from International Christian Embassy Jerusalem.