Beirut – The Secretary General of so-called Lebanese Hezbollah party, Hassan Nasrallah, admitted on Friday that 26 of his militants were killed in Syria, while one was missing and another captured.
In a televised speech delivered during a ceremony to mark the passing of 40 days since the killing of the party’s commander Mustafa Badreddine, Nasrallah said: “The Aleppo province battle in northern Syria is Syria’s biggest strategic battle.”
Nasrallah confirmed the presence of a large number of the so-called Hezbollah militants in Aleppo, where his party had been engaged in fierce battles against Islamic factions.
“We have a responsibility to be more present in the city of Aleppo. We will increase our presence and everybody is asked to participate because the battle in Aleppo is the true and big strategic combat.”
Nasrallah accused the U.S. for demanding a truce in Syria with an aim to support the Syrian opposition forces.
“The other camp was falling, when Washington intervened to reap a cease-fire in Aleppo in order to help terrorist groups,” Nasrallah said.
Nasrallah accused the Lebanese banks of harming people and their belongings. “We will not allow such harm,” he said.
Concerning the U.S. Financial Act against Lebanese banks that deal with so-called Hezbollah, Nasrallah said: “From the beginning, we rejected this law for several reasons,” adding that some in Lebanon are claiming that the party was financially collapsing.
“This is stupid and childish,” he said.
He added that even if banks implement the U.S. Financial Act, the party would not be affected because it does not run business projects or investment institutions that benefit from banks.
Nasrallah said: “We openly say that Hezbollah’s budget and funds come directly from the Islamic Republic of Iran, not through banks.”
He said some banks went too far in implementing the U.S. measures to an extent not even requested by the Americans themselves. ”Is this legal and humanitarian behavior or is it an attack on people?” Nasrallah asked.
Nasrallah said his party was open to positive solutions and discussions with concerned parties over the banking crisis.
“We are keen to protect this country and its economy,” he added.