Hezbollah sees US war on Iran as unlikely

Lebanon's Hezbollah deputy leader Sheikh Naim Qassem is pictured during an interview with Reuters at his office in Beirut's suburbs, Lebanon August 3, 2016. (File/Reuters/Aziz Taher)
Updated 27 June 2019
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Hezbollah sees US war on Iran as unlikely

  • The leader of Hezbollah, a heavily armed group founded by Iran's Revolutionary Guards in 1982, said last month it was unlikely the US would launch a war against Tehran
  • Trump said any war between Iran and the US would be swift, but reiterated his desire to avoid a military confrontation even while blasting Tehran’s leaders

BEIRUT, June 27 (Reuters) - The Iran-backed Lebanese Shi'ite group Hezbollah believes a U.S. war on Iran is unlikely for reasons including Iran's strong defensive capabilities, Hezbollah's deputy leader said in an interview published on Thursday.
Sheikh Naim Qassem told Lebanon's al-Joumhouria newspaper U.S. President Donald Trump "does not need war".
"He does not benefit from a war that he can start but whose results he cannot control and which might begin with Iran but may be accompanied by the region being set on fire," he said.
The leader of Hezbollah, a heavily armed group founded by Iran's Revolutionary Guards in 1982, said last month it was unlikely the United States would launch a war against Tehran as it would pay a heavy price.
On Wednesday, Trump said any war between Iran and the United States would be swift, but reiterated his desire to avoid a military confrontation even while blasting Tehran’s leaders.


Stena Impero operator says tanker’s crew safe and well

Updated 2 min 20 sec ago
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Stena Impero operator says tanker’s crew safe and well

  • ‘... they’re all okay and in good health and they’re getting good cooperation with the Iranians on board the vessel’

STOCKHOLM: All 23 crew on a British-flagged tanker seized last week by Iran in the Strait of Hormuz are safe and well, the vessel’s Swedish operator Stena Bulk said on Wednesday after speaking to them.

Iran said on Saturday it had seized the Stena Impero because it had collided with a fishing boat. Stena Bulk has said it has received no evidence of such a collision.

“We had direct contact with the crew on board the vessel last night by telephone and they’re all okay and in good health and they’re getting good cooperation with the Iranians on board,” the firm’s spokesman Pat Adamson said.

Its CEO Erik Hanell said he hoped Tuesday’s contact was “a first sign that we will soon see more positive progress from the Iranian authorities.”

Britain described the seizure as piracy and called on Monday for a European-led naval mission to ensure safe shipping through the Strait, a strategic waterway for oil transportation.

Adamson said the next step for the operator would be to try and get somebody on board to check up on the crew, but that he had no timeline for when the crew might be repatriated.

“We haven’t had any direct response from the Iranian authorities about visiting the vessel as yet but we hope we will have that soon,” he said.

“All the appropriate governments and embassies are supporting and helping us.”