BEIRUT

Lebanon News

Hezbollah bloc MP denies fighters sent to Syria

Hezbollah members carry the coffin of Hussein Abdel Ghani al-Nimr during his funeral procession in Ansar, Monday, Oct. 8, 2012. (The Daily Star/Nidal Solh)

BEIRUT: Hezbollah bloc MP Kamel Rifai denied Tuesday that members of the resistance group were being sent to fight alongside the Syrian army, saying the party’s principles prohibited it from such activities.

“The party has a basic rule that forbids fighting anyone other than Israel and thus it bans its elements from fighting in Syria,” Rifai, who belongs to Loyalty to the Resistance bloc, told The Daily Star.

He also said religious reasons forbade the party from sending members to Lebanon’s neighbor.

“I can definitely say Hezbollah bans fighting in Syria because it could never approve hostility against Muslims,” he said.

Recent reports allege the Lebanese resistance group sent fighters to Syria and that a number of its members were killed in fighting there before being returned to Lebanon for burial. Syrian rebels have also continuously accused Hezbollah of involvement in the 18-month crisis.

“Funerals were held for four Hezbollah members who died at a military training camp as well as three others who passed away in the Nabi Sheet explosion. None of them were involved in the Syrian fighting as has been rumored,” Rifai said.

“It is well known that Hezbollah possesses arms and trains its elements to use them... and some accidents and mistakes in training caused the death of party members,” the lawmaker said.

Last week, Hezbollah said three of its fighters were killed in an explosion at a munitions depot in Nabi Sheet, east Lebanon.

 

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