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Netanyahu Says Iran Pays $700 Million To Hezbollah Annually

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (C) arrives at a weekly cabinet meeting in Jerusalem on June 2, 2019.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (C) arrives at a weekly cabinet meeting in Jerusalem on June 2, 2019.

Radio Farda, Jerusalem - Israel Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, says the Islamic Republic of Iran transfers $700ma year to Hezbollah in Lebanon.

Celebrating Jerusalem Day on Sunday, June 2, Netanyahu said: “Every year, Iran’s foreign Ministry transfers over $100m under diplomatic cover, by seemingly innocent means, to Lebanon and from there to Hezbollah.”

Speaking at a ceremony in Ammunition Hill in Jerusalem, and commemorating Israel’s capture of Jerusalem in 1967, Netanyahu said that these vast sums are used for Iran and its proxies’ hostile activities in the region.

“Our neighbors know this, all the Arab states know it, and that is one of the things bringing them to a renewed closeness with us,” Benjamin Netanyahu said.

Although Netanyahu did not elaborate further, it seems that he was referring to Saudi Arabia and its allies in the Persian Gulf who are believed to be growing ties with Israel.

Netanyahu added: “Iran’s backing for Hezbollah and other armed groups in the region also threatens Arab states, which has brought them closer to Israel.

“These enormous amounts are used to fuel the endless aggression by Iran and its satellites in our region.”

In an apparent warning to Tehran, he said: “Those who try to harm us will be hit several times harder.”

Netanyahu’s speech yesterday also highlighted the two rocket attacks from Syria into the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights on Saturday night.

The rockets were fired by the Syrian army from Mount Hermon which borders the Golan.

Israeli’s occupation of the Golan Heights is not recognized internationally except by the United States after Donald Trump declared the area Israeli in March, going against decades of U.S. policy.

Only one of the rockets reached the area held by Israel but did not explode and caused no casualties – there are more than 30 Israeli settlements in the Golan, home to around 20,000 Israelis. Around 20,000 Druze Arabs also live there, having stayed after Golan was captured by Israel in 1967.

Retaliating to the attack, Israeli Defense Forces hit the Quneitra region in Syrian-controlled Golan with missiles, killing three soldiers and wounding seven others, Syria’s state-run media Sana reported, citing a military source.

The London-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights claimed that one of the Israeli missiles hit an assembly center for the Lebanese Hezbollah and the Iranian forces in the south of the Syrian capital city, Damascus.

In their later reports through Sunday, the Syrian opposition maintained that up to 10 members of forces allied with the Islamic Republic of Iran were killed in the Israeli missile attacks.

Neither Iran nor the Lebanese Hezbollah, have confirmed the Syrian opposition reports, so far.