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EU move on Hezbollah frustrates Beirut

July 26, 2013 at 12:43 PM

BEIRUT, Lebanon, July 26 (UPI) -- The EU's decision to list Hezbollah's military wing as a terrorist organization will complicate Lebanese political affairs, a caretaker minister in Beirut said.

The Council of the European Union placed Hezbollah's military wing on its list of terrorist groups Thursday. Hezbollah said the decision was made as a favor to Israel.

Hezbollah is a member of the ruling March 8 political alliance. Najib Mikati, a Hezbollah ally, resigned as prime minister in April because of internal political disputes.

The Daily Start newspaper in Lebanon Friday quoted caretaker State Minister Mohammad Fneish as saying the EU decision would thwart Lebanon's efforts to form a new government with the opposition March 14 slate.

"We stressed [to EU Ambassador Angelina Eichhorst] that the decision will make the Cabinet formation process more complicated because the other side will use it to support its stance of opposing the participation of a political party [Hezbollah] in the government," he said.

Fniesh met the EU envoy in Beirut Thursday. She told Lebanese leaders she would explain the decision to Hezbollah lawmakers.

The EU said listing Hezbollah's military wing would not interfere with normal diplomatic affairs with the Lebanese government.

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