|Iran says EU blacklisting of Hezbollah is ‘unacceptable’||
TEHRAN – Iran has condemned the European Union’s decision to put the military wing of Lebanese group Hezbollah on its list of terrorist organizations, describing it as a “biased” move.
The decision goes against all political and legal norms, is “surprising”, and is “unacceptable”, Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi said on Monday.
Pressed by Britain and the Netherlands, the European Union blacklisted Hezbollah’s armed wing on Monday over accusations it was involved in a bus bombing in Bulgaria that killed five Israelis and their driver a year ago, and its deployment of thousands of fighters to help Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, according to Reuters.
According to BBC, the decision makes it illegal for Hezbollah sympathizers in Europe to send the group money, and enables the freezing of the group’s assets there.
In a statement, Hezbollah said the EU decision “was written by American hands with Israeli ink.”
The group said the move “has no justification and is not based on any proof.”
Some EU member states had been wary of the measure, saying it could further destabilize the situation in Lebanon.
The Iranian foreign minister said, “To label a resistance group, which has been fighting against invasion and occupation and has a legal presence, with the people’s support, in the Lebanese system of governance, as terrorist shows the loose logical foundations on which the move is based.”
“Such measures will not change the popular and truth-seeking nature of” Hezbollah, Salehi said, adding, “The European Union’s move will serve the illegitimate interests of the Zionist regime.”
On Tuesday, Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Araqchi also condemned the move as “ill-advised” and “surprising”, saying, “Hezbollah is part of Lebanon’s political structure and… is welcomed and respected by the people of this country and the Muslim world.”
Araqchi expressed hope that the EU would review its decision.
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