European Leadership Network (ELNET) applauds today’s decision of the German government to ban all activities of Hezbollah and its affiliates in Germany and to no longer distinguish between Hezbollah’s military and political wings. The decision is an important milestone in ensuring regional security and countering terrorism, as well as safeguarding Jewish life in Germany, fighting extremism and antisemitism. The ban on the activity of the terror organization gives a clear example to other European countries, which should follow suit.
With today’s ban on the activity of the Hezbollah terror organization announced by Interior Minister Horst Seehofer, the German government is comprehensively implementing the resolution passed by the German Bundestag on December 19th, 2019. Over the last few years, ELNET had consistently called for this measure.
The raids on Hezbollah cells in North Rhine-Westphalia, Bremen, and Berlin that took place this morning are a clear signal to the terror organization that its activities in Germany will no longer be accepted. The ongoing efforts to destroy Israel as well as terror attacks on European soil cannot be tolerated. These efforts are also about protecting German citizens from Hezbollah’s narcotics and arms smuggling, as well as human trafficking that Hezbollah operates to fund its activities.
Germany is the third European country after the Netherlands and the UK, to ban Hezbollah in its entirety. Further action is necessary on the European level to address the terrorist threat and the criminal activity of Hezbollah in Europe. Without such a step, terrorists will continue to act with impunity. This will not only harm the EU’s credibility in the fight against international terror, it will also impede the work of Germany’s security services.
Additionally, Europe must reassess its relations with Iran, which arms and funds Hezbollah’s operations. Economic and financial support for Hezbollah amounts to support for terror, which should be fought in all its forms.