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11 Dec, 2017 17:10

Hezbollah chief says fight for Jerusalem is now top priority

Hezbollah chief says fight for Jerusalem is now top priority

Lebanese Hezbollah will work with its allies to create a strategy “in the field” to confront Israel, the group’s leader, Hassan Nasrallah, said, calling again for a third Palestinian intifada (uprising), during a rally in Beirut on Monday.

“Today the axis of resistance, including Hezbollah, will return as its most important priority ... Jerusalem and Palestine and the Palestinian people and the Palestinian resistance in all its factions,” Nasrallah said, as cited by Reuters.

Speaking by video-link at a rally attended by tens of thousands in Hezbollah’s stronghold in southern Beirut, Nasrallah vowed that the struggle for Jerusalem and an independent Palestine is now Hezbollah’s top priority.

According to Nasrallah, Hezbollah’s regional victories – the Iran-backed group played a key role in ground operations against Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS) in Syria – will allow it to renew its focus on Palestine.

He also called on Hezbollah and its allies to form a united strategy "in the field" to confront Israel, and advocated for third Palestinian intifada to overturn US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

Demonstrators marched through the group’s Beirut stronghold carrying banners reading "Jerusalem, Eternal Capital of Palestine" and "Jerusalem is Ours".

Last week, President Donald Trump officially recognized Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and said he would move the US embassy there, sparking fury and condemnation from Arab states as well as from Washington’s European allies.

The Beirut rally took place on the day after a violent protest outside the Lebanon’s US Embassy.

Last week, Nasrallah called for an “Islamic summit that would declare Jerusalem as the eternal capital of Palestine.”

"We support the call for a new Palestinian intifada and escalating the resistance which is the biggest, most important and gravest response to the American decision," he added, as quoted by Lebanon’s Naharnet TV.

Israel has waged two wars against Hezbollah, with the most recent conflict, in 2006, killing more than a thousand Lebanese civilians. Hezbollah convoys inside Syria have also been frequent targets of Israeli airstrikes.