U.S. Official: Iranians Joining Hizbullah in Key Syria Battle

إقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية W460

Iranians are working alongside Hizbullah fighters to back Syrian troops battling to retake the rebel stronghold of Qusayr amid fears of a civilian massacre, a U.S. official said Tuesday.

"It is the most visible effort we have seen by Hizbullah to engage directly in the fighting in Syria as a foreign force, and we understand there are also Iranians up there," a senior State Department official told reporters.

His information was based on reports from commanders of the rebel Free Syrian Army, but he was unable to give any estimates of how many Hizbullah fighters or Iranians were involved, and what exact role the Iranians were playing.

"I don't know that they are directly involved in the fighting, but I don't think the people that I'm talking to know that themselves," the official told reporters travelling with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry.

"This is an important thing to note -- the direct implication of foreigners on Syrian soil for the regime," he cautioned on a conference call in Muscat.

Many opposition commanders had reported that forces from Hizbullah "are directly engaged in fighting literally on the streets. They say that their men... are directly fighting against Hizbullah commanders."

"Iran's role and Hizbullah's role have grown substantially over the last couple of months," he warned ahead of a Friends of Syria meeting to be held in Jordan on Wednesday.

Observers have alleged that Hizbullah fighters were leading the battle for Qusayr in Homs province, three days after the Syrian regime began an assault to regain control of the town.

The town is a key strategic prize as it sits on the main highway between Damascus and the Mediterranean coast, and also controls rebel supply routes from the northern city of Tripoli.

"The world is watching this and we are watching this and we will know if they commit massacres.. and we will hold them accountable," the U.S. official warned the regime of Syrian President Bashar Assad.

The Syrian opposition had voiced concerns that "when regime forces do go into Qusayr, if they do capture it, that there will be retaliation against the civilian population," he added, stressing "there are still thousands of civilians in the city."

Comments 19
Default-user-icon The Truth (Guest) 21 May 2013, 20:52

Lebanese Resistance...

Default-user-icon DCNZogh (Guest) 21 May 2013, 20:59

OK So now the Persians are helping the Syrians fight for their land against Chechyen and other assorted foreigners. Seems fair to me!

Thumb primesuspect 21 May 2013, 21:05

Si, but they never managed to keep them for a long time unlike Greeks, Egyptians, or Romans.

Missing peace 21 May 2013, 21:15

impossible! assad said he didn t need the help of hezbis or iranians... i guess they are there for a pilgrimage then....

Default-user-icon Truth (Guest) 21 May 2013, 22:12

The team at work in Syria, IS the team which assassinated Hariri and most other politicians in Lebanon ! The threads are only too clear today !

Missing realist 21 May 2013, 22:33

He is running low on alawite fighters and needs them to destroy damascus before he leaves it to the coast. This war is gona be long and bloody, took the afghanis 12 years and 1 million victim to topple the communist regime which was supported by the soviet empire

Default-user-icon John Marina (Guest) 22 May 2013, 00:01

If those terrorists are surrounded, where they get their ammunition and food from? Are those beards going to rule Syria?

Default-user-icon John Marina (Guest) 22 May 2013, 00:11

Those are not Arab lands, the Arabs occupied our lands and imposed their language and religion on us., Scotland, Wales Ireland are breaking up from England and imposing their own original language and culture, Scotland is on the way after over 1000 years. This is what we should do in Lebanon and Syria. The problem with the Arabs is they don't learn from history. It is never late to revert to our origins

Default-user-icon Antoun Khoury (Guest) 22 May 2013, 12:53

John marina, first of all, you are not lebanese, secondly of all, most arab christians in the levant hail from the yemenis who are arabs. Thirdly we speak arabic and have done that for 1300 years. If you want to return to ancient cultures then which should one choose? Greek? Canaanite? Roman? Egyptian? Assyrian? Or how about returning to beeing african as our ancestors? Your selfhate is pathetic. Just be proud of what you are. We are more arab than we are non-arab and if the entire world would think like you then everyone would be changing their language and identity based on who occupied their country 1000, 2000, 3000 years ago. Grow up, arent you an old man supposed to be smart?

Default-user-icon Khalkouchtar Moghbani (Guest) 22 May 2013, 01:06

Are they butchering people and eating their hearts raw? Are they raping women? Are they killing priests? Are they kidnapping bishops? Are they targeting people from other sects and religions and torturing them? Ah, OK.

Default-user-icon Khalkouchtar Moghbani (Guest) 22 May 2013, 01:16

I like it when military big wigs like yorgo want others to fight yorgo-style while they 3am yergho on Naharnet and other bloody battlefileds! Aren't Lebanese the most brilliant human beings and tacticians? I can recall one great strategist and tectician, Dr. Arreet 7akeh who is known to say: amn al moujtama3 al massi7i tole3 art 7akeh bi art 7akeh while he trampolined into the arms of the Syrians at the height of their occupation. Now this is what I call a superb strategy and a ruse ploy. You go, 7ak...awati.

Missing -karim_m1 22 May 2013, 01:38

"His information was based on reports from commanders of the rebel Free Syrian Army".


Thumb phoenician 22 May 2013, 02:13

Anymore evidence that Partition is the answer?

Default-user-icon LolalHakawati (Guest) 22 May 2013, 03:08

"Never interrupt your enemy when he's making a mistake."

Missing VINCENT 22 May 2013, 03:17

I've been vocal re. this, and this will be the future if Iran sustains its military power and influence in our region. Iran will have the following dogs: second one called Lebanon and Syria being the first. Will not succeed in Iraq. Once Iran positions itself to reap the benefits is has been seeking, there will be no more feeding time for its dogs and discard them like toilette tissue. Or you chose to be an ally of the West where there will be an opportunity to offer you more if you know how to put yourself in the receiving side.

Missing cowboymicho 22 May 2013, 04:44

Who cares. Chechyns, Saudis, Yemenis, Kuwaitis, qataris, Turks, Somalis, etc, etc, etc have joined in for the rebels. Let them kill Each other.

Default-user-icon Neal (Guest) 22 May 2013, 07:06

long live the Syrian civil war

Thumb jcamerican 22 May 2013, 09:00

"I don't know that they are directly involved in the fighting, but I don't think the people that I'm talking to know that themselves," the official told reporters travelling with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry.

Can it be more clearer than that?

Thumb sophia_angle 22 May 2013, 16:37

mainly all arabian countries must turn into a democracy but slowly (phases)..the best is to start from school, this sudden change from one regime to another is very dramatic. most people wants freedom, but some extremists are taking adv. to take power as in egypt..i think arabian regimes to turn into democracy must start through learning..