Hezbollah chief backs Palestinian 'intifada'

AFP , Wednesday 14 Oct 2015

Lebanon's Hezbollah supporters gesture as they listen to their leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah through a screen during a religious ceremony on the eve of Ashura, in Beirut's southern suburbs, Lebanon October 14, 2015 (Photo: Reuters)

The head of Lebanon's powerful Shia Hezbollah movement on Wednesday backed the Palestinians in their clashes against Israeli forces, describing them as resistance and an "intifada".

"I emphasise our absolute support for the rights of the Palestinian people and their intifada," Hassan Nasrallah said in a televised address ahead of the Shia Muslim religious holiday Ashura.

"It is incumbent upon us all to stand by the Palestinians and help them all we can, and to recognise the fact that the Palestinians have in front of them... no choice but the choice of resistance and intifada," he added.

Nasrallah said the Palestinians were responding to "provocations by Israelis" and were seeking to prevent the "Judaisation of Al-Aqsa mosque".

His comments come after a wave of mainly stabbing attacks by Palestinians against Israelis that have raised concerns of a full-blown uprising akin to the first and second intifadas.

On Wednesday, two more stabbing attacks were reported in Jerusalem, including one that wounded a 70-year-old woman.

The crisis started in late July when 18-month-old toddler Ali Saad Dawabsha was burned to death and three other Palestinians were severely injured after their house in the occupied West Bank was set on fire by Israeli settlers.

The settlers smashed the windows of two homes in the village of Duma near Nablus and threw Molotov cocktails inside the buildings. Dawabsha died after sustaining serious burns.

The parents of the toddler, Riham and Saad, and their other son Ahmad lost their lives after suffering serious injuries as a result of the attack

Hezbollah is a fierce opponent of Israel and battled to push its forces out of southern Lebanon before their withdrawal in 2000.

A war between Hezbollah and Israel took place in the summer of 2006.

The conflict killed more than 1,200 people in Lebanon, mostly civilians, and some 160 Israelis, most of them soldiers.

In recent years, Hezbollah has skirmished with Israel on the demarcation line between Lebanon and Israel, but avoided a larger-scale conflict.

*This story was edited by Ahram Online. 

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