Russian Ambassador Reacts to Anti-U.S. Ruling
Russian Ambassador to Lebanon Alexander Zasypkin commented on the latest ruling of a Lebanese judge against the U.S. Ambassador to Lebanon over her statements, al-Joumhouria daily reported on Monday.
“The statement made by (US ambassador to Lebanon Dorothy) Shea does not differ from what other American officials declare in the context of pressure on Lebanon and Hizbullah,” the daily quoted Zaspykin as saying.
He pointed out that Washington holds Hizbullah responsible for corruption in Lebanon and for the economic stalemate, the crisis of the banking system and the status of customs and border crossings.
“We all know how the financial and economic situation in Lebanon is greatly affected by the US sanctions and restrictions on money transfers, mainly that Washington controls the dollar and controls the management of financial affairs globally,” he added.
He criticized the US saying it wants to “use public anger and resentment in Lebanon against the prevailing conditions and in favor of its political agenda,” noting that Washington is trying to push Lebanon towards implementing reforms “to measure its own standards.”
“The US policy towards Lebanon implies an explicit call for strife and a clear incitement against the Resistance. Moscow strongly rejects the accusations leveled against the party that will not surrender no matter how severe the sanctions and campaigns intensify,” he added.
A judge in the southern city of Tyre issued a ruling over the weekend banning local and foreign media working in the country from airing or publishing locally comments by the U.S. ambassador for a year.
Judge Mohammed Mazeh said he acted after receiving a complaint from a citizen who considered Shea's comments "insulting to the Lebanese people."
During an interview with Saudi-owned news channel Al-Hadath aired on Friday, Shea had said that the United States has "grave concerns about the role of Hizbullah," describing it as "a designated terrorist organization."
"It has siphoned off billions of dollars that should have gone into government coffers so that the government can provide basic services to its people," she said. "It has obstructed some of the economic reforms the Lebanese economy so desperately needs," she added.