Sunday, July 28, 2013

Arab Gulf countries plan tougher anti-Hezbollah sanctions than EU

BERLIN (JPost) – The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) – comprising six Arab countries – plans to impose robust sanctions against Hezbollah that will surpass the potency of last week’s EU measure labeling the military wing of Hezbollah as a terrorist entity, according to media reports on Sunday.

Saudi Arabian paper Al-Watan, which cited an unnamed source, wrote that the GCC views Hezbollah as a monolithic organization and “does not differentiate between Hezbollah’s military and political wings.”

In light of the council’s decision not to separate Hezbollah into distinct parts, the source said the GCC’s sanctions are slated to be “more comprehensive than the EU’s decision.”

According to Al-Watan, lines of diplomatic communication took place “between the GCC and some European and international countries in a bid to clamp down on Hezbollah and its members.”

The six GCC members are Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. They are already “studying” counterterrorism methods for cracking down on Hezbollah. Saudi Arabia has deported supporters of Hezbollah from its territory, while Bahrain declared the organization to be a terrorist entity in April, making it the first Arab country to outlaw the Lebanese-based group.

The US, Canada, Israel, and the Netherlands consider Hezbollah’s entire apparatus to be a terror organization.

The 28-member countries of the European Union placed the group’s military wing on the EU terror list last week.