Tabbara: US does not want political, economic or financial instability in Lebanon

hezbollah paradeCommenting on the most recent  round of US sanctions against   Hezb0llah , former Lebanese Ambassador to Washington Riad Tabbara said they  are unlikely to have serious consequences on Lebanon, pointing out that  “US policy towards Lebanon, so far, shows that it does not want political, economic or financial instability in Lebanon and a US-Persian war is “unlikely,” al-Joumhouria newspaper  reported on Friday.

In an interview with al Joumhouria , Tabbara said he “expects a kind of understanding between Hezb0llah and the competent Lebanese authorities, as experienced in the previous US sanctions on Hezb0llah , because the party is part of the Lebanese government and parliament.

“An understanding was reached between Hezb0llah  and authorities in Lebanon when the US imposed the previous sanctions, mainly that the sanctions targeted the financial situation and the banking sector. Everybody remembers the Lebanese delegations that visited Washington earlier this year and the year before,” noted Tabbara.

“It is unlikely for the US to impose sanctions on Hezb0llah’s allies, such as the AMAL Movement and Free Patriotic Movement and others, because such a move leads to dramatic results,” he added. “The Americans usually study every measure they take in Lebanon, especially in terms of its impact on its economic situation.”

He pointed out that the latest statements of the US State Department and Treasury “included no negative signals. The US does not want to threaten Lebanon’s stability.”

Hezbollah parliament bloc chief MP Mohammad Raad (L ) ,Hezbollah MP Amine Cherri (C) and Hezbollah security chief Wafic Safa
Hezbollah parliament bloc chief MP Mohammad Raad (L ) ,Hezbollah MP Amine Cherri (C) and Hezbollah security chief Wafic Safa

The U.S. Treasury added three top Hezbollah figures to its list of sanctioned individuals on Tuesday, including two members of the Lebanese Parliament and a security official responsible for coordinating between Hezbollah and Lebanon’s security agencies.

It was the first time the U.S. Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control had designated a member of Lebanon’s Parliament under a sanctions list that targets those accused by Washington of providing support to terrorist organizations. Washington has designated Hezbollah as a terrorist group.

OFAC said it had added Amin Sherri and Muhammad Hassan Ra’ad, both members of Lebanon’s Parliament, for acting on behalf of Hezbollah. In an unusual move, it also released photos of the individuals, including one in which Iranian Quds Force commander Qasem Soleimani has his arm around Sherri’s shoulder.

OFAC said it also designated Wafiq Safa, who is in charge of Hezbollah’s Liaison and CoordinationUnit responsible for coordinating with Lebanese security agencies.