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Germany bans Hezbollah as a terrorist organization

BERLIN, 30 April 2020, TON: Germany has banned Hezbollah activity on its soil and designated it a terrorist organization, the Interior Ministry said on Thursday.

Police also conducted early morning raids in four cities across Germany. Security officials believe up to 1,050 people in Germany are part of Hezbollah’s extremist wing.

Israel and the United States had been pushing Germany to ban the organization. Germany had previously distinguished between Hezbollah’s political arm and its military units, which have fought alongside President Bashar Assad’s army in Syria.

A spokesman said Interior Minister Horst Seehofer had banned the activities of Hezbollah. United States has already designated Hezbollah as a terrorist organization.

The European Union classifies Hezbollah’s military wing as a terrorist group, but not its political wing. American Jewish Committee head David Harris said in a statement, “We now hope other European nations will take a close look at Germany’s decision and reach the same conclusion about the true nature of Hezbollah,” said Harris.

Britain introduced legislation in February 2019 that classified Hezbollah as a terrorist organization Last year, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a statement that he hoped Germany would follow Britain in banning Hezbollah.

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