Mouawad: Hizbullah's Battle in al-Qusayr Aimed at Fragmenting Syria

Head of the Independence Movement Michel Mouawad slammed on Sunday Hizbullah's fighting Syria, saying that it is aimed at achieving Iranian interests in the region.

He said in a press conference: “The battle of al-Qusayr is aimed at linking Hizbullah-controlled Lebanese regions to Syrian Alawite-controlled regions in order to divide Syria in the future.”

Moreover, he said that party chief Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah eliminated in his speech on Saturday the role of the Lebanese state, laws, borders, and constitution.

“The battle in al-Qusayr will act as Hizbullah's Vietnam and it will have repercussions on the whole of Lebanon,” he declared.

In addition, he refuted Nasrallah's claims that the party is combating takfiris in Syria, saying that extremism cannot be fought with extremism.

“We cannot confront Sunni extremism with Shiite extremism. We can confront these phenomenons through moderation,” Mouawad stressed.

“Does toppling the state protect Lebanon from the takfiri threat?” he wondered.

In addition, he said: “Our opposition to Hizbullah's fighting in Syria is not linked to our opposition to the regime or the March 8 camp, but it is linked to our keenness on Lebanon's safety.”

He warned that Hizbullah's actions are paving the way for Sunni-Shiite strife in the region.

Turning to Shiites in Lebanon, Mouawad called on them to reject Hizbullah's agenda, “which is aimed at protecting Iranian interests at your expense.”

“We must cooperate together to reach a better future for Lebanon,” he said.

Addressing Christians in March 8 camp, particularly the Free Patriotic Movement of MP Michel Aoun, he said: “The lawmaker has started to realize the dangers Hizbullah is posing on Lebanon.”

He urged them to end their political protection of Hizbullah's arms.

“Nasrallah's speech on Saturday destroyed the concept of resistance in Lebanon and turned Hizbullah into a sectarian militia,” Mouawad noted.

Nasrallah had said on Saturday that the Lebanese rooting for the victory of President Bashar Assad's regime or the opposition's rebels should fight in Syria instead of clashing in the northern city of Tripoli.

He considered that what is happening in the neighboring country is very crucial for Lebanon, explaining that through the stand his party is taking, it is defending Lebanon, Syria and Palestine.

The Shiite leader warned against the implementation of an American-lead project in the region through the war in Syria.

“The events in the last couple of years have proved that there is an axis lead by the United States while the rest are working under its orders. Everyone knows this axis is supported by Israel while al-Qaida and other takfiri organizations from around the world were paid to take part in it,” he detailed.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights announced on Thursday that 104 Hizbullah members, fighting alongside regime forces, had been killed in Syria since last autumn.

Commenting on the clashes Tripoli, Mouawad said: “The solution to the unrest in the city lies in allowing the army to impose its authority, not simply acting as a separating power between the armed groups.”

“No red lines should be imposed on the army in any area in Tripoli,” he remarked.

The Sunni district of Bab al-Tabbaneh borders the Alawite Jabal Mohsen area, and gunmen in the two areas regularly open fire on each other.

Violence has regularly broken out between the two communities as the conflict in Syria -- pitting a Sunni-led opposition against the Alawite regime -- raises tensions.

Three people were killed and four were injured in Saturday's clashes.

At least 23 people have been killed and 200 wounded in the unrest that erupted on May 19.

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