By AJC, Special for USDR
AJC welcomes the introduction of resolutions in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate urging the European Union to designate Hezbollah in its entirety as a terror organization. In 2013, the EU — encouraged especially by Bulgaria and Cyprus, which experienced the long arm of Hezbollah in their countries — designated only the “military wing” of the Iranian-sponsored Hezbollah.
AJC has long advocated for labeling the Lebanon-based Hezbollah a terrorist organization, and for applying sanctions against it.
“We encourage swift passage of the important bipartisan resolutions pressing the EU to do the right thing and finish what the 28-member state group began three years ago,” said AJC CEO David Harris, who recently published an op-ed, “Europe: Do the Right Thing on Hezbollah,” in leading publications in Bulgaria, France, Germany, Italy, and Spain.
“Presently, we have the remarkable situation that the U.S., Canada, the Netherlands, Israel, the Gulf Cooperation Council, and the Arab League all agree on the true nature of Hezbollah, yet the EU stands oddly apart, clinging to the apparent belief that it can tame Hezbollah’s behavior when, in reality, no such evidence exists,” Harris wrote.
Full designation by the EU would further delegitimize Hezbollah and hamper its ability to fundraise, recruit, and mobilize. Apropos, in December, AJC praised President Obama for signing the Hezbollah International Financing Prevention Act, which was adopted unanimously by the Senate and House of Representatives.
The Senate resolution (S.Res. 482), introduced by Senator Jean Shaheen (D-NH), is cosponsored by Senators Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), Daniel Coats (R-IN), Chris Coons (D-DE), Mark Kirk (R-IL), Ed Markey (D-MA), and Marco Rubio (R-FL). A companion bill in the House of Representatives, H.Res.750, was introduced by Representative Ted Deutch (D-FL) and is co-sponsored by Representatives Gus Bilirakis (R-FL), Susan Davis (D-CA), Steve Israel (D-NY), Mike Kelly (R-PA), Adam Kinzinger (R-IL), Ted Lieu(D-CA), and Lee Zeldin (R-NY).
SOURCE American Jewish Committee