Iraq News - Local News - Baghdadpost

Germany designates Iran-backed Hezbollah as terrorist organization

On Thursday, Germany has officially announced that it has designated the Iranian-backed Hezbollah as terrorist organization.

In a statement, the German Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said that Hezbollah criminal activities violate all international laws, adding that the organization was behind a multitude of attacks resulting in hundreds of deaths and injuries worldwide.

In addition,  the German police, earlier today, raided four groups associated with Hezbollah in various locations across the country to ensure that “evidence of potential sub-organizations in Germany could not be destroyed when this ban was announced.

The new move prohibits the showing of Hezbollah signs and symbols in public, including “in an assembly or in print, audio or visual media, pictures or portrayals.” Even the symbol of the Imam al-Mahdi Scouts, Hezbollah’s youth movement, is banned. The group’s assets will be confiscated.

The German authorities said that about 1,050 people living in the country are affiliated with Hezbollah.

Police searched mosque associations in the western state of North Rhine-Westphalia, Bremen and Berlin which they believe are close to Hezbollah, and the private residences of the leaders of each association.

The German announcement did not come as a surprise, as lawmakers and government officials have long been working on a ban of the group.

The US, the UK, the Netherlands and several Arab states already recognize the organization in its entirety as a terrorist organization.

Hezbollah, Party of God, wields considerable power in Lebanon and is seen as a key supporter of its current government. It has been blamed for numerous attacks against Israel, the US and Jewish figures and institutions.

It was established in 1982 during Lebanon's civil war and became a major political party in the country, where it holds a majority in Parliament along with its allies. 

The movement also backs Syria's President Bashar al-Assad in the country's civil war.