Slovenia and Latvia both have become the latest EU countries to designate Hezbollah, a terrorist organisation in its entirety and to break with the EU’s artificial differentiation between Hezbollah’s military and political wings. The EU only lists the Lebanese shiite group’s military faction as a terrorist organisation.
The Slovenian government said that it had “adopted a decision on treating the Hezbollah group as a criminal and terrorist organisation posing a threat to peace and security.”
The statement said lawmakers made the decision based on evidence that “Hezbollah’s activities are intertwined with organised crime and the conduct of terrorist or paramilitary activities on a global scale.”
Hezbollah has already been designated a terrorist organisation by several countries and organisations across the world.
Latvia confirmed to the U.S. State Department’s Coordinator for Counterterrorism, Ambassador Nathan A. Sales that it also listed Hezbollah as a terrorist group and that it supports U.S. implementation of sanctions related to Hezbollah and is ready to place national travel bans on individuals associated with Hezbollah.”
Within the European Union, the following countries have so far recognized the Iranian-backed Hezbollah as a terrorist organization: the Netherlands, Germany, Lithuania, Estonia, Slovenia and Latvia. Other countries in the world have taken similar action including Argentina, Canada, Colombia, Honduras, Israel, Kosovo, Paraguay, Serbia, United Kingdom and the United States, as well as the Arab League and Gulf Cooperation Council.
The EU has listed only its “military” wing as a terror group, but not its “political” wing, due to France’s opposition.
Hezbollah itself rejects the artificial distinction.