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Hezbollah fighters' families unhappy about Syria involvement - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive
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Mourners carry the coffin of a Lebanese Hezbollah fighter, draped in the flag of the Lebanese Shiite Muslim party, who was killed in Syria during his funeral procession on July 5, 2013. AFP PHOTO /ALI DIA

Mourners carry the coffin of a Lebanese Hezbollah fighter, draped in the flag of the Lebanese Shiite Muslim party, who was killed in Syria during his funeral procession on July 5, 2013. AFP PHOTO /ALI DIA

Riyadh, Asharq Al-Aqsat—Mounting casualties among Hezbollah fighters in the fighting in Syria has led some Lebanese supporters of the organization to petition its leaders to scale back its involvement in the Syrian conflict.

A source with knowledge of the petions, speaking to Asharq Al-Awsat on condition of anonymity, said that the increasing numbers of Hezbollah soldiers killed in Syria, including some senior commanders, has raised concerns among the Lebanese Shi’ites, prompting some of them, especially residents of Ba’albak, to visit Hezbollah Shura member, Mohamed Yazbek, demanding a halt on deployments of their men to Syria.

The source added that the residents stressed during the meeting that their children had fought the Israelis in 2006 and other wars between the party and Israel, in response to the call for resistance against Israel.

However, they said their men’s participation in the fight against the Syrian people, in defense of the Syrian government, was shameful and that it was unacceptable to embroil their men in a war in which they had no interest at all.

The source further added that Hezbollah was going through difficulties because it could not withdraw from fighting alongside the Syrian government, especially at this time.

This has prompted leading figures within Hezbollah to hold high-level meetings, to discuss the issue and agree on a delegation to be sent to Iran, in order to explain the difficulties faced by the party in the fighting in Syria, and explain to the Iranian leadership that the party was no longer able to bear the burden of supporting the Syrian government alone by sending fighters from Lebanon, and that Iran had to send more Iranian fighters than it did before.

The source said the numbers of Hezbollah fighters participating in the fight alongside the Syrian government had increased noticeably. Following Hezbollah leader’s visit to Tehran and Damascus three months ago, more than 20 units were sent to Syria from the Bekaa by Hezbollah, each battalion consisting of approximately 100 men.