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News Categories » SECRETARY-GENERAL » Speech-Reports » Reports-2006

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Nasrallah: Resistance is a point of strength for Lebanon
Source: Aljazeera.com, 25-5-2006 & Daily Star, 27-5-2006

BEIRUT: A quarter of a million Hizbullah supporters packed a square in the southern port city of Tyre Friday to mark the anniversary of "Israel's" withdrawal from South Lebanon in 2000. A day earlier, the Islamic resistance group had launched a 10-day campaign to collect funds for Palestine, which is facing a crippling Western aid boycott after the election of Hamas.

In a speech delivered on the occasion, Hizbullah chief Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah said the Lebanese must join forces to resolve the numerous issues facing the country.
"I advise the Lebanese to stop referring to the UN Security Council and [the international community]," he said. "Let us unite our efforts to resolve our problems."
Nasrallah added that establishing "strong and special" relations between Beirut and Damascus would only be possible as a result of "a common will and agreement between the two counties."

"Such relations cannot be imposed," he said, in reference to Security Council Resolution 1680, which calls on Syria to establish diplomatic relations with Lebanon.
The massive celebration was held near the former "Israeli" military headquarters in Tyre amid pressure to disarm from the UN Security Council.

However, Nasrallah insisted the resistance would continue fighting "Israel" until the Jewish (Zionist) state withdrew from the (occupied) Shibaa Farms and released all Lebanese detainees held in its prisons.

The cleric added that while "Israel" had defeated Arab armies for decades, its withdrawal from Lebanon in May 2000 "after incessant attacks" by Hizbullah marked a significant turning point.

"We have entered the phase of victory," he said. "After May 25, there would be no more `Nakba` and no more `Naksa,`" Nasrallah said in reference to the 1948 "Catastrophe" which led to the creation of "Israel" and the devastating 1967 Arab defeat. "[From this point forward] there will only be resistance, liberation and victory."

Nasrallah praised the Lebanese group's armed resistance against the Jewish state, AFP news agency reported.

"It (armed resistance) is the only available alternative before us," Nasrallah said, warning that northern "Israel" is still "under the firing line" of his group`s rockets.
"The ports, bases, factories and everything is within the range of the resistance's rockets," he said.

Nasrallah also reiterated statements he made years ago that Hizbullah has more than 12,000 rockets, reminding his listeners that "when I say we have more than 12,000 rockets I don`t mean 13,000 rockets."

"I admit that the resistance has had for years - since 1992 - a respectable and strong rocket arsenal whether in quantity or quality," Nasrallah said.

He also stressed that the "resistance is a point of strength for Lebanon" in the absence of a powerful Lebanese army and in the face of the mighty "Israeli" military forces.
The Hizbullah chief also rejected UN proposals to integrate his movement within the ranks of the Lebanese army, saying that move would deprive Lebanon of a powerful weapon.
"And if the resistance carries out any action... the enemy would hit back... at the Lebanese army positions," he said.

Hizbullah, the only armed group that was allowed to keep its weapons after the 1975-1990 civil war in Lebanon because it was defending the country against "Israel", is considered a terrorist group by the United States.

On May 24, 2000, "Israel" withdrew its forces from southern Lebanon and redeployed its troops along the internationally-recognized border between the two countries in accordance with UN Security Council Resolution 425.

The "Israeli" withdrawal ended its 22-year occupation of the territory following fierce resistance from Hizbullah.

Despite its withdrawal, fierce fighting often erupts between "Israeli" forces and Hizbullah fighters in the water-rich (occupied) Shibaa Farms area, which is located at the convergence of Lebanon and Syria and the "Israeli"-occupied Golan Heights. The border region was seized by "Israel" from Syria in 1967 (locals say "Israel" started edging its occupation over Shibaa Farms since 1970).

Hizbullah enjoys widespread support for its struggle against "Israel", which is widely credited with forcing "Israel" to withdraw its forces on May 25, 2000, ending 22 years of occupation.

During the rally, supporters carried portraits of Nasrallah and waved the party`s yellow and green flag, as well as those of Iran and Palestine.
As is customary in his speeches, Nasrallah thanked Iran and his party`s other ally Syria, for their support.

"We thank the Syrian people and President Bashar Assad" for their support, he said. "This grateful gesture is the least we can do."

Once more taking aim at Washington, Nasrallah accused the US of trying to incite violence between Sunnis and Shiites in Lebanon and the region.

04-01-2008 | 13:06


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