Hizbullah Says Not Active in Germany

Hizbullah chief Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah on Monday condemned Germany's ban on his group as bowing to U.S. and Israeli pressure and insisted his party is not active in the country.

Germany designated Hizbullah a "Shiite terrorist organization" on Thursday as its security forces raided mosques and associations allegedly linked to the group.

In a televised speech, Nasrallah called it a "political decision that reflects Germany's submission to America's will and to pleasing Israel."

"When we say we are not active in Germany, we are being 100 percent honest," said the leader of the Iranian-backed group.

"These are Hizbullah supporters who are not organizationally linked to Hizbullah," he said of the individuals targeted by Germany.

The United States and Israel have long designated Hizbullah a terrorist group and urged allies to follow suit.

Like the European Union, Germany had until now outlawed only Hizbullah's military wing while tolerating its political arm, a major force in the Lebanese parliament.

Nasrallah on Monday said he expected more EU countries to follow Germany's example, even though his movement had ceased activities "across the world, and in Europe especially" several years ago.

He condemned German authorities for raiding mosques and associations allegedly linked to the group, saying "there was no need for these barbaric actions."

He also called on the Lebanese government to protect its nationals in Germany and elsewhere.

Source: Agence France Presse, Naharnet

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