Israel Praises EU Move on Blacklisting Hizbullah as Lieberman Considers It 'Insufficient'
Israeli Justice Minister Tzipi Livni praised the EU decision Monday to blacklist Hizbullah's armed wing, which she said made clear that the party is a "terrorist organization".
"I welcome this announcement by the EU, that Hizbullah is now included in the list of terrorist organizations," said Livni.
"Finally, after years of deliberations, the claim that Hizbullah is a legitimate political party has rightfully failed. Now it is clear to the entire world that Hizbullah is a terrorist organization", she said in a statement.
Meanwhile, former Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman considered that The EU's decision is "partial and insufficient."
"Hizbullah's military and political wings are two faces of the same coin," he stated.
Israel's President Shimon Peres said the EU's decision is a clear message to "terror" groups that their "murderous" actions would not be tolerated.
"I welcome the European Union's decision regarding Hezbollah, a significant and necessary step towards putting an end to the spread of terror across the globe," Peres said.
"Your decision sends a clear message to terror organizations, and the countries which harbor them, that their murderous actions will not be tolerated," he said in a statement.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also praised blacklisting Hizbullah's armed wing, saying the party has imposed a "terrorist" rule on large parts of Lebanon.
"I welcome the fact that the EU has also declared Hizbullah to be a terrorist organization and I thank the leaders of its member states," Netanyahu said in a statement.
Hizbullah "has imposed terrorist rule on wide sections of Lebanon, has converted them into an Iranian protectorate and is stockpiling tens of thousands of rockets there."
"These have been placed in the heart of civilian populations and are designed to be fired at population centers in Israel," he said.
The European Union's decision came after some of its 28 foreign ministers overcame reservations in some member states that such a move would further destabilize Lebanon.
To do so, ministers agreed that EU political and economic links with Lebanon would be maintained.
They also highlighted the fact that it is the military wing alone that is blacklisted after Hizbullah was blamed for a deadly attack on Israeli tourists in Bulgaria last year.
Hizbullah, which is close to Iran, is Israel's sworn enemy, and its recent intervention in Syria has dismayed Western powers which back rebels battling to oust President Bashar Assad.