BEIRUT: A mother who publicly criticized Hezbollah party members claims she and her children have been forced out of their South Lebanon home in retaliation.
Video footage which went viral on social media, showed furniture and other items belonging to Fadwa, who is in her mid-40s, scattered outside her rented house in the town of Debaal.
The woman has for weeks been critical of Hezbollah supporters and leaders from Debaal and her hometown of Majadel over alleged marriage relationship matters. She has been seen on a popular social media platform naming people who she claimed had harassed her after she exposed them.
Fadwa said local police had failed to properly address her complaints about the individuals and she had also questioned the role of Shariah courts on the issues.
Taking to social media Fadwa claimed she had been previously abducted and had received threats for putting party members in the spotlight.
Fadwa said: “You (Hezbollah) are condemning me for swearing at Hezbollah while everyone else swears at them, but I was the one who dared to speak out.”
She said she had gone to the police and courts in the hope of getting justice against those who she alleged had harassed her.
After leaving Dabaal, the mum and her two children moved to the village of Babliyeh, but she says they were also evicted from there.
News websites have been sharing Fadwa’s eviction story with some posters saying she had been “treated like a pariah” while others defended Hezbollah.
The municipality of Babliyeh issued a statement denying it had evicted Fadwa and her kids. Mayor Saleem Dia said: “The municipality has not forced Fadwa to leave the village nor has it assigned anyone to evict her.
“What happened is that some angry people, whose family members and relatives have been targeted by Fadwa’s insults, evicted her as a spontaneous response to her repeated insults.”
Photos of Fadwa with her two children in the mayor’s house were circulated on social media as he met with her in a bid to resolve the issue.
Activist Ali Al-Amin, director of Al-Janoubia news website, told Arab News: “What happened has great implications, and has never occurred before. The eviction of a woman because she criticized Hezbollah reflects the extent of the party’s influence in South Lebanon in the political and security sense, the scope of its power, and its authority even over police stations — based on what the woman said on the police station’s response to her complaint.
The eviction of a woman because she criticized Hezbollah reflects the extent of the party’s influence in South Lebanon in the political and security sense, the scope of its power, and its authority even over police stations — based on what the woman said on the police station’s response to her complaint.
Ali Al-Amin, director of Al-Janoubia news website
“The woman’s boldness in her criticism of Hezbollah was not tolerated by the party, and I don’t think her relatives were the ones who forced her to leave the town because relatives don’t do that,” he added.
“It seems Hezbollah also could not bear the consequences of evicting the woman, so they issued a statement through the municipality of Majadel to deny having anything to do with the move.”
Al-Amin noted that Fadwa’s public criticism of Hezbollah indicated the extent of unrest within communities in South Lebanon, through social problems and falling standards of living.
“When people are stressed out and oppressed, they must express their anger freely,” he said.
“This is what Fadwa did, but Hezbollah responded to her by sending a message to the people that they might face a similar fate to that of Fadwa if they crossed the party’s red lines.”