Envoy underlines Iran’s determination to help Lebanon overcome security crisis

TEHRAN (FNA)- Iran’s Ambassador to Lebanon Mohammed Fathali voiced Tehran’s readiness to continue expansion of security cooperation with Beirut to help the country defend its interests against terrorist groups.

In an interview with Al-Akhbar, Fathali stressed that Iran’s willingness to provide the Lebanese army with military equipment is the “first phase” of cooperation between the two sides.

He further added that Iran offered once again to give Lebanon military aid because it is “concerned for Lebanon and its security, especially that the country is facing a serious crisis because of terrorism.” He said, “That is why, we believe it is our duty to stand by Beirut and by the countries that belong to the axis of Resistance (against Israel), to tell them you are not alone in this fight against terrorism. We show our friendship not only emotionally, but practically as well through military aid.”

Al-Akhbar on Saturday released a report on the details of Iran’s promised military gift to Lebanon, although no independent source in Tehran or Beirut confirmed the report.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran has specified the types of equipment it can present to the Lebanese army in a letter to the foreign ministry and the foreign ministry has submitted the letter to (Defense Minister Samir) Moqbel,” a report by Al-Akhbar said.

“Iran is ready to deliver a number of TOW (anti-tank) missiles and its special rockets, night goggles, 120-mm mortar rounds, and munitions, 60-mm artillery and its shells, munitions of T55 and T62 tanks, munitions of 155-mm cannon and DShK (Dushka) and its munitions,” the letter said.

The newspaper also reported that the US has sent official and unofficial messages to Lebanon and threatened Beirut not to accept the military gift, or Washington would stop its aids to the Lebanese army.

Last week, Secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) Ali Shamkhani announced that Iran plans to gift a military tool or weapon to the Lebanese army in the near future.

“The gift will be sent in the near future and it will be delivered to the Lebanese defense minister during his upcoming visit to Iran,” Shamkhani said after meeting Lebanese Prime Minister Tammam Salam in Beirut late in September.

A few days later, senior officials in Beirut said Iran had presented a list of military tools and weapons to be gifted to the Lebanese army to help the Arab country in its fight against terrorism.

By Fars News Agency


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