‘There is no Lebanon’: Israel’s intelligence minister charges Iran takeover is ‘red line’

by WorldTribune Staff, November 10, 2017

The resignation of Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Al-Hariri is further evidence that Iran is intent on controlling large swathes of the area surrounding Israel, which the Jewish state considers a “red line,” Israeli Transportation and Intelligence Minister Yisrael Katz said on Nov. 9.

Israeli Transportation and Intelligence Minister Yisrael Katz

“What happened with Al-Hariri revealed the true face of Hizbullah and what we are claiming and the whole world now sees it: Al-Hariri was merely a fig leaf; in fact Lebanon is Hizbullah and Hizbullah is Iran and we see this as a red line,” Katz said in an interview with Arutz Sheva.

“Right now the world, in addition to pressuring Iran over the nuclear weapons must also pressure Iran over its support for terrorism and impose heavy sanctions on Hizbullah as well as sanctions on Iran, if it does not stop funding and arming Hizbullah and other terrorist organizations,” Katz said.

Asked whether he would support Israeli countermeasures such as air strikes, Katz replied, “We do not talk about such things, but Israel has military capabilities.

“At the same time there is an openness in the world to understand that after what happened with Al-Hariri there is no Lebanon, there is Hizbullah, and therefore the sanctions on Lebanon must be severe in order to disarm Hizbullah. I believe it is possible to remove this threat and achieve the goal.”

Katz added that U.S. President Donald Trump is leading the efforts to change the Iran nuclear deal.

“I think that with significant international pressure, Iran can be prevented from acquiring nuclear weapons,” Katz said.

“There is no dispute whatsoever in the State of Israel, at all levels and in the entire security establishment, over the fact that Israel will not allow Iran to acquire nuclear weapons, so I hope that the effort will bear fruit but if Iran comes close to acquiring nuclear weapons, Israel itself will have to ensure that this does not happen.”

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