A draft order, laid in Parliament on Monday, declares Hezbollah in its entirety—political and military arms, as well as two other Islamist terror groups: Ansaroul Islam, and Jama’at Nasr al-Islam wal Muslimin, Gov.UK announced.
Starting this Friday, subject to Parliament’s approval, being a member, or inviting support for Hezbollah or either of the other two groups will be a criminal offense in the UK, subject to a prison sentence of up to 10 years.
Home Secretary Sajid Javid said in a statement: “My priority as Home Secretary is to protect the British people. As part of this, we identify and ban any terrorist organization which threatens our safety and security, whatever their motivations or ideology which is why I am taking action against several organizations today.
Hezbollah is continuing in its attempts to destabilize the fragile situation in the Middle East – and we are no longer able to distinguish between their already banned military wing and the political party. Because of this, I have taken the decision to proscribe the group in its entirety.
Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt said in a statement: “We are staunch supporters of a stable and prosperous Lebanon. We cannot however be complacent when it comes to terrorism – it is clear the distinction between Hezbollah’s military and political wings does not exist, and by proscribing Hezbollah in all its forms, the government is sending a clear signal that its destabilizing activities in the region are totally unacceptable and detrimental to the UK’s national security.
“This does not change our ongoing commitment to Lebanon, with whom we have a broad and strong relationship.”
There are currently 74 international terrorist organizations proscribed under the Terrorism Act 2000, alongside 14 organizations connected to Northern Ireland proscribed under separate legislation.