September 19, 2019

UN Official Praises Hezbollah Deputy After Meeting

Supporters of Lebanon's Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah display Hezbollah and Iranian flags as they listen to him via a screen during a rally marking the 11th anniversary of the end of Hezbollah's 2006 war with Israel, in the southern village of Khiam, Lebanon August 13, 2017. REUTERS/Aziz Taher

A United Nations official praised a senior Hezbollah leader May 20 after the two held a meeting.

U.N. Special Coordinator for Lebanon Jan Kubis tweeted, “Grateful for an open and substantive discussion on a broad range of topics with Deputy Secretary General Naim Qassem of Hizbullah. On top I received a copy of his book – a necessary reading.”

According to the Times of Israel, Qassem “is on the record threatening Israel with annihilation” and is the top lieutenant of Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah, who said in 2002, If they (Jews) all gather in Israel, it will save us the trouble of going after them worldwide.”

U.N. Watch executive director Hillel Neuer tweeted to Kubis, “You just praised the leader of a terrorist group that commits genocide in Syria and murders civilians worldwide. I am calling on Secretary-General @antonioguterres to remove you immediately from your post as United Nations Special Coordinator for Lebanon.”

Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Emmanuel Nashon tweeted,We are shocked and disappointed by this meeting with a designated terror organization’s leader, threatening Israel, Lebanon and the whole region.”

An Office of the U.N. Special Coordinator for Lebanon spokesperson told the Times of Israel that they work with Hezbollah as one of the “political forces” involved in Lebanon.

Nearly 400 members of Congress wrote in a May 20 letter to President Donald Trump that “Hezbollah has aimed more than 100,000 rockets and missiles at Israel that are increasingly more precise and of longer-range, giving the terrorist group the capability to strike anywhere in Israel.” Israel has also destroyed several Hezbollah terror tunnels in December; the U.N. Interim Force in Lebanon concluded April 25 that at least three of these tunnels violated a 2006 ceasefire between Israel and Hezbollah.