Itongadol.- Amid the mounting death toll of Hezbollah operatives in Syria, a delegation of Hezbollah supporters in Lebanon has asked the Shi\’ite group\’s leadership to stop sending operatives to fight for Syrian President Bashar Assad, pan-Arabic daily Asharq Alawsat reported Sunday.
The London-based paper quoted a source familiar with the situation as saying the delegation, consisting largely of people who had lost loved ones in Syrian battles from the Baalbek region, made their request to Hezbollah Shura Council member Mohammed Yazbek.
The delegation reportedly argued that they had been proud to send their sons to fight in the 2006 Second Lebanon War against Israel, but saw the deployment of Hezbollah fighters to defend the Syrian regime as "flawed and intolerable."
Thousands of the Iranian-backed Shi\’ite group\’s fighters have been supporting ally Assad in his fight against Syrian rebels. Hezbollah fighters are currently aiding Assad in his offensive on the strategically important central city of Homs.
Many Lebanese see Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah\’s support for Assad against an insurgency dominated by Syria\’s Sunni majority as a miscalculation that will drag Lebanon into the Syrian quagmire, exacerbate fighting in Lebanon itself and deepen Sunni-Shi\’ite sectarian rifts in the region.
Asharq Alawsat quoted a source in the organization as saying that Hezbollah was facing the dilemma of being unable to withdraw its forces because they had become integral to Assad\’s defense, but also facing growing criticism in Lebanon and the Arab world for their support of the Syrian regime.
The paper quoted Hezbollah sources as saying the group must send a delegation to its patron Iran to clarify that it can no longer bear the burden of supporting the Syrian regime alone and that Iran must increase the participation of its own operatives in the war.