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Taking Precaution

Damascus bombing Photo: AFP
Damascus bombing Photo: AFP
 
Mugniyah. Assassinated in Syrian capital Photo: Reuters
Mugniyah. Assassinated in Syrian capital Photo: Reuters
 
 

Hizbullah orders its men not to visit Syria

Lebanese media report organization has issued 'travel advisory' to its members following Mugniyah assassination, car bomb explosion in Damascus last Saturday. Senior Hamas members in Syrian capital on high alert as well

Roee Nahmias
Published: 10.01.08, 12:27 / Israel News

Hizbullah has instructed its men, particularly senior members involved in the organization's security, to refrain completely from visiting Syria until further notice, Lebanese media reported Wednesday.

 

The instruction was issued following the explosion of a car bomb in Damascus last Saturday, which left 17 people dead, including a high-ranking military officer.

 

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According to Lebanese media, Hizbullah asked its men to take precaution during their visits to the Syrian capital following the assassination of the organization's military leader, Imad Mugniyah. Now, following the car bomb, the request was changed to a stark instruction to halt all visits to Syria.

 

According to the report, for years Hizbullah viewed Syria as a safe place for its members, where there was no need for the strict precautions used in Lebanon, but now the organization has changed its perception and views Syria as a dangerous place.

 

The policy was changed after Hizbullah realized that Syria has become significantly penetrable for the activity of radical Islamic groups, and that the Syrian security organizations have failed to discover who was responsible for the car bomb explosion.

 

According to the report, Hamas leaders living in Damascus also decided to take unusual security measures following the Mugniyah assassination. In the past, Syria's security organizations were exclusively responsible for their safety.

 

The Syrian security organizations are experiencing problems on two levels, the report said. On the one hand, they are penetrable to radical Islamic groups which have entered Syria and settled in the country, and on the other hand, they are penetrable to foreign security organizations, leading to security concerns in Syria.

 

'Car bomb aimed at undermining stability'

Meanwhile, a Syrian security source reported that the country's security organizations have exposed the cell responsible for Saturday's attack. The source told Syrian newspaper al-Watan that all cell members were citizens of Arab states and none of them were Syrian.

 

According to the source, the car accidentally exploded in a neighborhood in south Damascus, and was actually meant to be detonated in a different place. The accident happened "due to reasons which will be revealed later on," the source said.

 

He added that "the investigation being conducted shows that the cell planned to undermine the security and stability in Syria through instructions it received by the elements financing it."

 

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