Wednesday, April 24, 2024

Hezbollah says US blocked Iran oil delivery to Lebanon

A high-ranking official with the Lebanese Hezbollah resistance movement has stated that the United States prevented crisis-hit Lebanon from receiving the fuel shipment from Iran to ease power outages amid deepening economic crisis.

Hezbollah Deputy Secretary General Sheikh Naim Qassem made the remarks in a post published on his Twitter page following a recent drone strike against an Iranian fuel convoy heading to Lebanon through Syria.

“The US prevented Lebanon from receiving 600 thousand tons of Iranian fuel, estimated to be worth $350 million, which could provide 5 to 6 hours of daily power supply for several months,” he tweeted.

Iraqi security and border officials announced an air raid by a drone targeted a convoy of 22 tankers carrying Iranian fuel that had entered Qa’im border crossing on the Syrian side of the border with Iraq late on Tuesday.

The convoy crossed the borders into Syria after obtaining “all necessary legal approvals from Iraq” and according to the transportation documents the Iranian fuel was heading to Lebanon through Syria, two border police officials noted.

Back in September, Lebanon’s then Minister of Energy and Water Walid Fayad said an Iranian fuel delivery was vital to Beirut’s plans to reform its electricity supply system.

He added that fuel deliveries from Iran would enable the Lebanese Ministry of Energy and Water to boost its finances by increasing electricity supply to customers in the country.

Fayad admitted, however, that Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah and leader of the Lebanese Free Patriotic Movement Gebran Bassil had been influential in the success of Iran’s initiative to send fuel to Lebanon.

Lebanon has been beset by a severe fuel crisis that has left many households and businesses struggling with recurrent power outages, while its economic meltdown since 2019 has slowed down imports of fuel for government plants.

Last year, Iran supplied much-needed fuel shipments to Lebanon via Syria after the Lebanese Hezbollah resistance movement asked for Iranian help to ease the energy shortage in the Arab country.

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