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Middle East Strategy at Harvard: Hezbollah: Narco-Islamism

Author: Matthew Levitt
March 22, 2009

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Matthew Levitt examines Hezbollah's increased role in illicit drug trafficking in Latin America in this article by Middle East Strategy at Harvard, a project of the John M. Olin Institute for Strategic Studies.

Excerpt: Earlier this month, the United Kingdom announced that it is reopening dialogue with the political wing of Hezbollah. Unlike the United States, the United Kingdom has only banned Hezbollah's terrorist (External Security Organization) and military wings. The ban on the terrorist wing came in 2000, while the ban on the military wing only came in June 2008 in response to Hezbollah's "providing active support to militants in Iraq who are responsible for attacks both on coalition forces and on Iraqi civilians, including providing training in the use of deadly roadside bombs," for plots to kidnap British security workers in Iraq, and for its support for terrorist activity in the Palestinian Territories.

Meanwhile, the European Union has not yet designated any part of Hezbollah-military, political or otherwise-although it did label Imad Mughniyeh, the late Hezbollah chief of external operations, and several other Hezbollah members involved in specific acts of terrorism.

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