UK to finally ban terror group Hezbollah entirely

Exclusive: Home Secretary will announce military group's political wing


Sajid Javid is to buttress his tough stance against Islamist extremism by proscribing the Iran-backed terror group Hezbollah in full, the JC can reveal.

The Home Secretary will use his speech at next week’s Conservative Party annual conference to announce the move, which has long been called for by the Jewish community and others concerned with terrorism.

Mr Javid will say next week that, following formal reconsideration of the UK’s position on the Lebanese-based political party and militia, he will be taking action to ban all parts of the group.

Since 2008, the UK has banned only Hezbollah’s so-called “armed wing”, leaving Islamists taking part in the annual Al Quds Day March in London to wave the group’s yellow flag and claim to be expressing support only for the terror group’s “political wing”.

But Mr Javid — who is a staunch ally of the Jewish community — has seized on the Home Office assessments, which say Hezbollah “is committed to armed resistance to the state of Israel and aims to seize all Palestinian territories and Jerusalem from Israel,” and “its military wing supports terrorism in Iraq and the Palestinian territories.”

Mr Javid is understood to have received strong backing for his decision to certify Hezbollah as an illegal terrorist organisation from new Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt.
Mr Hunt recently labelled Hezbollah an “outrageous, disgusting” organisation and is said to have been pushing for its proscription since taking over as Foreign Secretary from Boris Johnson.

Hezbollah is already considered a terror group by America, Canada, Israel and the Arab League.

Last Friday, a man accused by the US of being one of Hezbollah main financiers, Assad Ahmad Barakat, was arrested near Brazil’s border with Argentina and Paraguay. That triple border, or Triple Frontier as it is known, is a hub for smuggling and drug-trafficking, and for decades has been linked to the financing of Hezbollah terrorist activity.

In 2017, the Israeli government estimated that Hezbollah had an arsenal of nearly 150,000 rockets stationed near its border with Lebanon. 

The decision to ban Hezbollah will increase Mr Javid’s claim to be a Home Secretary who can deliver on earlier pledges to make sure there are “no safe spaces” for Islamist terrorists in the UK.

It will also enable him to draw a contrast with Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn. During a now infamous meeting in Parliament in 2009, Mr Corbyn referred to representatives from terror organisations Hezbollah and Hamas as “friends”.

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