Hezbollah chief defends manoeuvres

Nasrallah describes drill as response to Israeli preparation for new war on Lebanon.

    Woman carry pictures of dead Hezbollah fighters at a Martyr's Day rally in Beirut on Sunday [Reuters]

    His speech was broadcast live by Hezbollah's Al-Manar television on a giant screen in the Hezbollah stronghold of southern Beirut.
     
    'Clear message'
     
    Nasrallah said they were intended to send "a clear message" to Israel that his fighters were ready to defend Lebanon.
     

    Your Views

    "I hope the Lebanese will be united and will not make Lebanon, their homeland, another battleground"

    Brutus, Lahore, Pakistan

    Send us your views

    "The [Israeli] enemy has been conducting military manoeuvres for months".
     
    He said 50,000 Israeli officers and soldiers participated in the drill.
     
    "These manoeuvres are to prepare for an attack on Lebanon" he said.
     
    A senior Hezbollah official confirmed that thousands of unarmed fighters of the group took part in the organisation's own manoeuvres after reports were published in the pro-Hezbollah newspaper Al-Akhbar.
     
    No other details were given.
     
    Fouad Siniora, the Lebanese prime minister, played down the reports, saying the exercises took place on paper only.
     
    "What happened is nothing but an internal simulation exercise that was never translated on the ground," he said.
     
    Personal supervision
     
    Al-Akhbar said Nasrallah personally supervised the exercise, which were carried out without weapons or uniforms during the last three days.
     
    "I tell the [Israeli] enemy that these manoeuvres were real, serious and big. I am not going to give details," Nasrallah said as part of Sunday's speech.
     
    "There is a great deal of readiness [by Hezbollah] which the enemy must understand."
     
    He received cheers from the crowd after saying that "the resistance in Lebanon possesses determination, men and the necessary and sufficient weapons to defend Lebanon".

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    How different voting systems work around the world

    How different voting systems work around the world

    Nearly two billion voters in 52 countries around the world will head to the polls this year to elect their leaders.

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    The great plunder: Nepal's stolen treasures

    The great plunder: Nepal's stolen treasures

    How the art world's hunger for ancient artefacts is destroying a centuries-old culture. A journey across the Himalayas.