Major Hezbollah Leader Assassinated Outside His Home in Beirut
Hezbollah commander Hassan al-Laqis was shot dead outside his home in Beirut on Wednesday.
Anti-Assad Sunni radicals claimed responsibility for his assassination.
His funeral was held Thursday.
The Iranians blamed the Jews.
USA Today reported:
Gunmen shot dead a senior Hezbollah commander outside his home Wednesday in southern Beirut, an attack that the Iranian-backed group quickly blamed on arch-enemy Israel. Israeli officials denied any involvement.
Hezbollah ceremoniously announced the death of Hassan al-Laqis and described him as one of the founding members of the group, suggesting he was a high-level commander close to the Shiite party’s leadership.
An official close to Hezbollah said al-Laqis held some of the group’s most sensitive portfolios and was close to the group’s leader, Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah.
His shooting death comes as Lebanon faces increasing sectarian violence pouring over from the civil war in neighboring Syria, where Hezbollah forces fight alongside President Bashar Assad’s troops, angering the mainly Sunni rebels seeking to oust him. Hezbollah strongholds have been the target of car bomb attacks and suicide bombers attacked the Iranian Embassy in Beirut last month, killing 23 people.
Sunni militant groups have claimed responsibility for those attacks, calling it retaliation for Hezbollah’s involvement in Syria.
Hezbollah said in a statement al-Laqis was killed as he returned home from work around midnight.
Islamist expert Dr. Mark Christian, Executive Director Global Faith Institute, added this on al-Laqis:
“Hassan was the main coordinator between Hezbollah and the Assad regime in Syria. He played a very secretive role in the war in Syria.”