Israel’s ambassador Issacharoff urges Germany to ban all Hezbollah activities
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Israel’s envoy to Germany, Jeremy Issacharoff, stepped up his push for Chancellor Angela Merkel’s administration to ban the activities of the Lebanese terrorist entity Hezbollah in the federal republic.
The Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung reported on Wednesday that Issacharoff said, “The decision of the Bundestag, which calls for the prohibition of Hezbollah activities, came at the right time and is very important.”
In December, the governing coalition parties passed a Bundestag resolution urging the federal government to accept a ban on Hezbollah activities.
The ambassador hopes that means measures against Hezbollah will be adopted. Merkel and her interior minister Horst Seehoffer have vehemently resisted outlawing Hezbollah’s movement in Germany.
The Jerusalem Post reported last year that 1,050 operatives raise funds and recruit new members in the federal republic, according to German intelligence reports. Hezbollah contributes to rising antisemitism in Germany, including calls for the destruction of Israel.
In 2012, Hezbollah operatives blew up an Israeli tour bus in Burgas, Bulgaria, murdering five Israelis and their Bulgarian Muslim bus driver.
Canada, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, the US, Israel, the Arab League and a number of Latin America countries have classified the Hezbollah organization as a foreign terrorist entity.
Germany and the EU have merely banned Hezbollah’s so-called “military wing” while allowing its political arm to operate. Hezbollah’s describes itself as a unified organization without arms.
“For anyone who knows Hezbollah’s terrorist acts, there is no difference between the military and civilian wings of this organization. The Bundestag’s call to outlaw this group as a whole reflects a precise assessment of the situation, ” said Issacharoff.
The US ambassador to Germany and current acting Director of National Intelligence, Richard Grenell, took the lead in urging Germany to ban Hezbollah. Grenell has authored opinion articles calling for Hezbollah to be designated a terrorist entity in Germany. The Post learned last year that Grenell urged a Hezbollah ban in every meeting he held with German officials.
The social democratic party politician Eva Högl said that the anti-Hezbollah resolution is an “important building block in the fight against antisemitism.” Högl’s party colleague, the deputy foreign minister, Niels Annen, has rejected a ban of Hezbollah.
The Bild paper wrote last year that Annen is responsible for “making antisemitism socially respectable” in Germany.