Nasrallah Confirms Having Fateh-110 Missiles, Says Busted Spy Had Nothing to Do with Hizbullah Military Structureإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
Hizbullah chief Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah has confirmed that his group has had Iranian Fateh-110 missiles that can hit the whole of Israel since 2006, noting that an Israeli spy recently busted in Hizbullah's ranks had “nothing to do with the entire military structure of the resistance.”
The Fateh-110 missiles have a minimum range of 200 kilometers that can hit entire Israel.
“We have had the Fateh-110 missile since 2006 and it has become outdated compared to what we have now,” said Nasrallah in an interview with al-Mayadeen TV that was aired on Thursday evening.
“What the resistance has in its possession qualifies it for engaging in any confrontation that the Israelis might think of,” Nasrallah added.
Warning Tel Aviv, Hizbullah's chief said Israel would be totally mistaken if it was betting that “the resistance has weakened” or that its “capabilities, readiness, assets and determination have waned” due to participation in the Syrian war.
“It will find out that counting on these calculations will lead to a foolishness rather than a major mistake,” added Nasrallah, referring to Israel.
He pointed out, however, that “the Israelis are currently incapable of achieving a decisive and clear victory in any possible war on Lebanon.”
Noting that Hizbullah does not want a war and that “it is not seeking it,” Nasrallah underlined that his group maintains its “preparedness.”
“Anything that we might be obliged to do in any future war … anything that might be needed to win the coming war, we must be ready and prepared for it. The Resistance's military fronts must be ready,” added Nasrallah.
“When the leadership of the resistance asks you to enter into the Galilee, this means the resistance must be ready to enter into the Galilee and areas beyond Galilee,” said Nasrallah, addressing his group's fighters.
“As a resistance, we are stronger than ever, and God willing we will become stronger than we are now,” he added.
He said that Hizbullah has “all sorts of arms that can come to mind.”
“The resistance in Lebanon has everything the enemy can imagine and not imagine,” he added.
Nasrallah described the Israeli air raids on several targets in Syria in recent years as “an attack against the entire axis of resistance,” noting that his group's fighters stand ready to invade the northern Israeli region of Galilee in any future confrontation.
“The recurrent strikes on various targets inside Syria are a major violation, and we consider any strike on targets in Syria as an attack against the entire axis of resistance, not only against Syria,” said Nasrallah in excerpts of an interview with al-Mayadeen TV that will be broadcast in full on Thursday evening.
Asked whether the so-called axis of resistance -- which comprises Iran, Syria and Hizbullah – might take a decision to retaliate against Israel's raids, Nasrallah said, “Yes, such a decision could be taken … This axis has the ability to respond.”
“This is something open that might happen at any given time,” he added.
Nasrallah noted that “no one has given a commitment that the attacks against Syria will remain without a response.”
“This is the right of the axis of resistance and it is not Syria's right exclusively,” he added.
“When will this right be practiced? This depends on certain criterion that will be taken into consideration,” Nasrallah explained.
In response to a question, the secretary-general underlined that Hizbullah “does not have resistance formations” at the Syrian Golan Heights that are occupied by Israel.
“We're ready to offer help and assistance, but the issue has not been raised until the moment,” he added.
As for Hizbullah's relations with anti-Israel Palestinian groups, Nasrallah said “there might come a day when all resistance movements fight together against the enemy and we want strategic relations with everyone, topped by Hamas and the Islamic Jihad.”
Turning to the Syrian conflict, Hizbullah's chief stressed that “the notion that the Syrian regime can be ousted militarily has ended.”
“The Syrian armed groups that are linked to the (opposition National) Coalition or Saudi Arabia are on the path of demise,” he noted, emphasizing that “any solution in Syria would be impossible without President (Bashar) Assad."
Separately, Nasrallah confirmed that Hizbullah has recently busted a party official accused of spying for Israel who has been identified by media reports as Mohammed Shawraba.
“We busted a Hizbullah official who was recruited by the U.S. intelligence and subsequently the Israeli intelligence, but the issue has been greatly exaggerated,” said Nasrallah, playing down the media reports.
“He was never in charge of my protection and had never come close to any Hizbullah missile unit. He had nothing to do with the entire military structure of the resistance,” Nasrallah clarified.
“Infiltrations are part of the war between us and Israel and part of the battle's losses and we must expect things of this kind,” he added.
Nasrallah said the detained collaborator “confessed about all the information that he had passed on to the Israelis and the extent of communication between him and them.”
“Individuals working for Arab intelligence agencies have tried to approach officials in the party but they were busted,” he revealed.
“We discovered during the 2006 war that some Arab security agencies had obtained information about the party and passed them on to the Israelis,” he went on to say.
Nasrallah accused a powerful regional state of backing the extremist Islamic State group in Syria and Iraq and hailed the dialogue between his party and al-Mustaqbal Movement for creating “self-restraint.”
The regional country “is involved with the IS in Syria and Iraq but is now suffering from a crisis because of its stance,” Nasrallah told al-Mayadeen during the three-hour interview.
Nasrallah said that al-Mustaqbal chief ex-PM Saad Hariri gave the green light to the dialogue between his movement's representatives and Hizbullah despite the objection of several al-Mustaqbal officials.
The two sides have held two rounds of talks. Another session is scheduled to be held on Friday to discuss the presidential deadlock.
The dialogue has so far curbed sectarian tension, Nasrallah said. Its results appeared following the suicide bombing that rocked the northern city of Tripoli over the weekend, he added.
“All parties exercised a high level of self-restraint,” Nasrallah said, adding “had it not been for the dialogue, the reaction would have been different.”
Two Sunni suicide bombers blew themselves up on Saturday at a packed cafe in Tripoli's mainly Alawite Jabal Mohsen, leaving nine people dead and at least 37 injured.
The city has previously witnessed explosions and deadly rounds of fighting between the majority Sunni neighborhood of Bab al-Tabbaneh and Jabal Mohsen, whose residents belong to the sect of Syrian President Assad.
Nasrallah denied in the interview with al-Mayadeen TV that his party's members were “exhausted” in Syria.
Hizbullah has sent its fighters to Syria to help Assad in his battle against rebels seeking to topple him.
The party's secretary-general reiterated his support for his ally Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun, saying he should be Lebanon's next president.
Baabda Palace was left vacant after President Michel Suleiman's six-year term ended in May last year over differences between the country's rival factions on a compromise candidate.