Syria: Hezbollah 'set on backing Assad' in conflict says top US official
last update: September 14, 17:57
Dubai, 14 Sept. (AKI) - Militant Lebanese Shia group Hezbollah is committed to supporting the embattled regime of president Bashar al-Assad in its war with Syrian rebels, a top United States official told Dubai-based Arabic satellite new channel Al Arabiya.
US treasury department undersecretary for terrorism and financial Intelligence David Cohen told Al-Arabiya an exclusive TV interview that Hezbollah “was "dedicated in Syria now to supporting the Assad regime in its brutal repression of the Syrian people.”
Hezbollah is providing training to the Syrian forces working with Iran’s Qud force tasked with exporting the Islamic revolution, Cohen said.
The United Nations estimates that over 20,000 people have been killed in the fighting between rebels and forces loyal to Assad in the 18-month conflict, which the Assad regime claims is being fomented by foreign terrorists.
Cohen spoke to Al-Arabiya after the US on Thursday imposed new sanctions on Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah and on two Hezbollah officials over their support for Assad.
The sanctions are set to freeze the men's assets and to block any individuals and financial institutions in the US from doing business with the top Hezbollah officials or their organisation.
"Hezbollah operates outside Lebanon and financial institutions around the world should be extraordinarily careful to be certain they are not doing any work on behalf of Hezbollah or any of the Hezbollah leadership,” said Cohen.
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