Kuwait protests to Lebanon over alleged Hezbollah training
Kuwait City, Kuwait - Kuwait has protested to Lebanon over the alleged training by Hezbollah of 21 Shiites convicted last month on charges of forming a ‘terror cell’ in the Sunni-majority country.
It demanded that pressure be put on the Shiite militant group, which has ministers in the Lebanese government, to ensure there was no repetition.
The protest follows Kuwait’s expulsion of 15 Iranian diplomats on Thursday over Tehran’s alleged links to those convicted.
The letter delivered by Kuwait’s Ambassador in Beirut late on Friday said the nation’s Supreme Court had found that ‘Hezbollah took part in contacts, coordinating meetings, paid funds and provided arms and military training in Lebanon’ for the defendants.
It called on Lebanon to take ‘the necessary measures to curb these disgraceful practices’ by Hezbollah as it is a partner in the government, Ambassador Abdulaal al Quenai told the official KUNA news agency.
Unlike neighbouring Sunni powerhouse Saudi Arabia, Kuwait maintains diplomatic relations with Shiite Iran. But sec- tarian issues remain sensitive. Shiites make up around one third of the emirate’s population.
Trump to host Hariri
US President Donald Trump will meet Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri in Washington next week for talks on issues including refugees and combatting terrorism, the White House announced late on Friday.
Analysts also anticipate US aid will be high on the agenda of the July 25 talks at the White House, which has made clear its intent to slash its aid budget for Lebanon, on grounds that national forces there have not adequately applied US military support towards reining in Hezbollah. ‘The two leaders will discuss issues of mutual concern, including the fight against terrorism, the economy, and refugees,’ the White House said in a statement.
‘This meeting will serve as an important opportunity to strengthen the bilateral relationship,’ the statement said, adding that the talks ‘will encourage other international and regional partners to support Lebanon as it faces a wide range of challenges’.