Tue, Nov 21, 2017 - Page 6 News List

Saudi Arabia and Bahrain target Iran, Hezbollah at special Arab League meet

Bloomberg and AFP, CAIRO

Saudi Minister of Foreign Affairs Adel al-Jubeir, right, speaks with members of the Saudi delegation on Sunday during an emergency meeting of the Arab League at the league’s headquarters in Cairo, Egypt.

Photo: AFP

The Arab League on Sunday classified Lebanon’s Hezbollah as a terrorist organization after an emergency meeting at its Cairo headquarters.

Arab foreign ministers in a final resolution condemned what it called the Iranian interference to destabilize the region, but the league will not declare war against Iran at the moment, Arab League Secretary-General Ahmed Aboul Gheit said in a press conference.

Aboul Gheit did not rule out that the league might consider going to UN Security Council to help prevent the Iranian intervention.

“Iran is aiming to control many of the Arab capitals,” he said.

The emergency meeting was held at the request of Saudi Arabia to discuss Iranian intervention in region and the ballistic missile launched from Yemen that targeted its capital, Riyadh, on Nov. 4.

Saudi Arabia later accused Iran of providing ballistic missiles to Yemen’s Houthi rebels and called the missile launch an Iranian act of war against the kingdom.

In opening remarks at the meeting, Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir warned Iran that Riyadh “will not hesitate to defend its national security to keep its people safe.”

In a resolution, the league issued a “strong condemnation” of this incident, saying it was “blatant aggression against the kingdom and a threat to Arab national security.”

The ministers affirmed Riyadh’s right to defend its territory and said they would support all legitimate procedures it might take “against these Iranian violation.”

They also tasked “the Arab group in New York to address the security council president to clarify Iranian violations” of a UN Security Council resolution on Tehran’s ballistic missiles program.

Bahraini Minister of Foreign Affairs Sheikh Khalid bin Ahmed Al Khalifa said Hezbollah was “in total control” of Lebanon.

“Iran’s biggest arm in the region at the moment is the terrorist Hezbollah arm,” he said.

Lebanon’s foreign minister did not attend Sunday’s meeting, but Beirut’s permanent representative to the league was present.

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