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Senior Iranian Official Urges Muslims To Help Arm Hizballah


August 1, 2006 -- The head of Iran's influential Guardians Council, Ayatollah Ahmad Jannati, today urged Muslim nations to arm Hizballah against Israel, according to ISNA student news agency.

Jannati said he considers it the duty of Muslims to give Hizballah and the Lebanese weapons, medicine, and food, as well as publicity and political and financial support.

Iranian leaders have rejected Israel's accusations they are supplying Hizballah with money and weapons.

Foreign Minister In Beirut

Meanwhile, Iranian Foreign Minister Manuchehr Mottaki today continued his visit to Beirut with a meeting with Lebanese President Emil Lahud.

The two were expected to focus on the conflict between Israel and Lebanese Hizballah guerrillas.

Later, Mottaki is due to meet Prime Minister Fuad Siniora and parliamentary speaker Nabih Berri.

On July 31, Mottaki called for an immediate cease-fire in the Israeli-Hizballah hostilities and criticized the UN Security Council's failure to stop the crisis.

"We are disappointed in the failure of the [UN] Security Council to support the Lebanese people during the last three weeks of [Israeli] aggression," Mottaki said.

While in Beirut, Mottaki also met French Foreign Minister Philippe Douste-Blazy, who has also been talking with Lebanese politicians close to Hizballah.

(AFP, dpa, Reuters)

Copyright (c) 2006. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036. www.rferl.org

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