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Lebanese Hezbollah unlikely to intervene in Iraq crisis

Although some have expressed concerns that Hezbollah could intervene in Iraq to protect Shiite holy sites from Islamic State militants, a number of Lebanese politicians and sources close to Hezbollah dismiss this possibility.
Shiite volunteers from Hezbollah Iraq, who have joined the Iraqi army to fight against militants of the Islamic State, formerly known as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), gather together in Baghdad, July 6, 2014. Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki's coalition should withdraw its support for his bid for a third term and pick another candidate, Shi'ite Muslim cleric Moqtada al-Sadr urged, amid parliamentary deadlock over the formation of a new government. Maliki has come under mounting pressur

In a private meeting with Imam al-Mahdi Scouts this past June, Hezbollah’s Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah was reported as saying, “In Syria, I said, ‘The Sayyida Zeinab [daughter of Imam Ali] shrine will not be taken captive twice,’ and in Iraq I say, ‘The time when we allowed anyone in the world to destroy or desecrate our holy sites at Najaf, Karbala, Samarra is long gone.’”

Nasrallah’s statement came after the Islamic State (IS), formerly the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham, or ISIS, occupied Mosul and other cities in the north and west of Iraq over the last month, and after their threats to storm Shiite cities in Samarra, Najaf and Karbala and destroy the shrines of Ahl al-Bayt (the family of the Prophet Muhammad).

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