BEIRUT: Hezbollah MP Mohammad Raad defended Sunday his party’s military intervention in Syria and accused the March 14 coalition of seeking to turn Lebanon into an Israeli or American protectorate.
“What would the situation be like in [Lebanon] if Hezbollah was not fighting along the border to protect our people and prevent takfiris from controlling the border,” Raad asked, slamming the March 14 alliance for holding his party responsible over the recent car bombings in the country.
“We now see rigged vehicles entering Lebanon and ask the other team [March 14] if this is the state that you want? Do you want to blow up the country and its regions?” he asked.
“We ask you to consider the scenario of terrorists gaining control of Syria and the borders. Where would Lebanon’s security be? Where would freedom of expression be if they [takfiris], who know nothing of religion except its form, be?” he also asked.
The Future Movement-led March 14 coalition has repeatedly accused Hezbollah for Lebanon’s increasingly deteriorating security situation, arguing that the party’s military involvement in neighboring Syria has encouraged groups to seek retaliation on Lebanese soil.
Hezbollah says its presence in Syria is needed to protect the “resistance axis” from being defeated by extremist rebel groups that it claims are supported by U.S-backed Israel and a number of Arab states. Hezbollah says Lebanon would fall into the hands of takfiris without its intervention in Syria.
Raad vowed that his party would confront takfiris, saying “Hezbollah has the remedy for this disease but at a time [of our choosing] and methods that are in line with our principles.”
“These takfiris will fall. What is required of us is to be patient and uphold our doctrines,” he added.
Raad also slammed March 14 over the stalled Cabinet formation process, saying the alliance’s calls for a government that excluded his party would only serve Israel.
“What is intended [by a neutral cabinet] is in fact that we leave it and they describe it as a fait accompli government and the aim is to exclude us from it,” he said.
“They [March 14] want hegemony over the country without having a partner or anyone to keep a check on them,” he said.
“Their doctrine is the one that [drowned] the country in $60 billion of debt in times of peace and now they want to entrap the country in the times of crisis so that [Lebanon] can become an extension or protectorate of either Israel and America,” he added.
“They want the struggles and victories of our people to go in vain,” he said.