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Hizbollah says will quit Syria if Arabs stop meddling

Published on Feb 17, 2014 6:34 AM

BEIRUT (REUTERS) - Hizbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah called on Sunday, Feb 16, 2014, for Arab political forces to "stop the war on Syria", promising that if they left the country alone, his Lebanese Shi'ite group would also withdraw.

The three-year-old conflict in Syria has fuelled Sunni-Shi'ite tensions in neighbouring Lebanon and across the wider Arab world. It has drawn in militants who fight on both sides and receive funding and arms from rival regional powers.

"If you want to prevent this region from falling into chaos that will not end for decades, stop the war on Syria," Mr Nasrallah said, addressing all political forces in the Arab world.

"Get the fighters out of Syria, let the Syrians reconcile," the leader of the Iranian-backed movement said. "Of course if that happened, we would not remain in Syria either." Hizbollah fighters helped turn the tide for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in the military struggle against rebels last year. Mr Assad now has a firm hold on much of central Syrian territory around the capital and the Syrian-Lebanese border.

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