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Lebanon's Hezbollah deputy leader Sheikh Naim Qassem is pictured during an interview with Reuters at his office in Beirut's suburbs, Lebanon August 3, 2016. REUTERS/Aziz Taher
Lebanon’s Hezbollah deputy leader Sheikh Naim Qassem is pictured during an interview with Reuters at his office in Beirut’s suburbs, Lebanon August 3, 2016. He and his son, Mohammed, are reportedly involved in scams and swindled a man named Salah Ezzeddine of $27 million according to the report.REUTERS/Aziz Taher

Lebanese security forces arrested two drug traffickers in Lebanon’s Choueifat and Beirut’s southern suburb on June 8. One of those detained is the nephew of the Lebanese minister of industry, Hussein al-Hajj Hassan who represents Hezbollah in the cabinet.

Following the arrest, two contradictory statements were issued by the minister’s family. One attacked Hezbollah and accused it of drug trafficking and embezzling money while the other defended it.

In the first statement, which was published by a Lebanese website and attributed to the Hajj Hassan family, the latter slammed Hezbollah and asked where some of the party leaders got their funds from.

The statement claimed there was “an organized campaign against the family ahead of the parliamentary elections.”

It accused several Hezbollah officials of corruption such as Hezbollah Deputy Secretary General Naim Qassem and said that he and his son, Mohammed, are involved in scams as they’ve swindled a man named Salah Ezzeddine of $27 million.

Funding sources

The statement also questioned the source of money of Ahmed Msheik, the former head of Hezbollah’s security committee and slammed Hezbollah member and politician Mohammed Fneish whose brother was arrested last year for selling fake medicine and forging the health ministry’s stamps.

It also said that another Hezbollah official named Hussein Nasrallah embezzled funds and he “stole the orphans’ money,” adding that Hezbollah Member of Parliament Hussein Moussawi “owns Captagon factories and deals in Captagon pills.”

“Hassan al-Nimr embezzled money. And didn’t Hezbollah official Sheikh Mohammed Yazbeck’s son sell arms to the Syrian opposition? Didn’t Sheikh Baqir Moahmmed al-Hajj Hassan cover for the smugglers?” the statement asked.

The second statement however, which was issued later, confirmed the family’s support of Hezbollah and condemned what it described “an individual act carried out by one of its family members,” in reference to the arrest of Hajj Hassan’s nephew over drug trafficking charges.

“This behavior harmed the family and the society,” the statement added.

AL ARABIYA

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