Yazbek to Lebanese Residents of Syrian Towns: We Won't Forget Youإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
Hizbullah on Sunday announced that it will not neglect the issue of protecting Lebanese residents who live in border towns inside Syria, stressing that “there will be no solution in Syria except through politics and dialogue.”
“To those screaming that the state should be in charge of defending its people: Has the state protected and defended the Lebanese residents who live inside Syria?” head of Hizbullah's religious committee Sheikh Mohammed Yazbek said.
“All the Lebanese must raise their voices high in defense of the Lebanese residents of Syrian towns who are suffering harm and injustice,” Yazbek added during a memorial service held at the Hermel town of al-Qasr for Osama Msarra, one of the Lebanese killed in recent clashes with Syrian rebels in the border area.
Addressing the residents, Yazbek went on to say: “Excuse them, they are busy with the electoral laws, showoffs and the blocking of roads, but we will not overlook your plight and we will remain loyal. We will stand on the side of right and the side of the aggrieved.”
“We are not attacking anyone but we will not allow anyone to attack us. We cannot stand idly by as our people, women and children are being aggrieved. We cannot tolerate to be uprooted from the land we have inhabited for tens of years as long as there is blood in our veins,” Yazbek added.
Three Lebanese Shiites have been killed in fighting in Syria, a Hizbullah official said Sunday, as the Syrian opposition accused the Lebanese group of intervening on the side of the regime.
He said they were acting in "self-defense,” without specifying if they were Hizbullah members.
Just hours earlier, the main bloc of the Syrian opposition accused the Damascus ally of having intervened "militarily" on the side of the regime, and warned this posed a threat to ties between neighbors Syria and Lebanon.
But Yazbek stressed that “our only enemy is Israel.”
“Those who believe they are strong must seek to liberate the holy sites and to defend Palestinian captives in Palestine. Why don't they send fighters to liberate Palestine?” Yazbek added.
He pointed out that “there will be no solution in Syria except through politics and dialogue.”
Hizbullah has systematically denied sending fighters into Syria, though its leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah acknowledged in October 2012 that party members had fought Syrian rebels but said they were acting as individuals and not under the group's direction.
Nasrallah clarified that the Hizbullah fighters were killed while defending Lebanese-inhabited border towns inside Syria. He explained that there are 23 Syrian border towns and 12 farms that are inhabited by Lebanese residents of various religious beliefs, adding that around 30,000 Lebanese residents live in these towns.
“The residents of these towns took the decision to stay and defend themselves against the armed groups and did not engage in the battle between the regime and the opposition,” Hizbullah's leader added.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the three slain Lebanese were members of pro-regime militias who had been trained by Hizbullah.
Louay al-Meqdad, spokesman for the Supreme Council of the Free Syrian Army, has accused Hizbullah of shelling Syrian territory with artillery and rocket launchers from bases inside Lebanon.