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|Wednesday, November 07, 2001, updated at 08:19(GMT+8)|
Lebanon Not to Freeze Hezbollah's Assets: OfficialLebanon will not freeze Hezbollah's assets as it is a resistance movement instead of a terrorist organization, Finance Minister Fouad Siniora said Tuesday.
"We insist that resistance movements should be differentiated from terrorist groups because they fight for liberating their occupied lands," the minister was quoted by the official NNA news agency as saying.
Washington last week announced a terrorist list of 22 organizations, including Hezbollah and the Palestinian Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas). The U.S. also urged all countries to freeze those groups' assets.
Hassan Nasrallah, secretary general of Hezbollah, rebuffed the list last Sunday, accusing the U.S. of waging a war against "Muslims and Islam" in Afghanistan.
Hezbollah denied it has any cells operating outside Lebanon and the U.S. has not linked the group with the suicide attacks in New York and Washington on September 11.
However, Hezbollah was widely regarded as involved in a series of bombings and kidnappings of Westerners during Lebanon's 1975-1990 civil war.
The Iran and Syrian-backed guerrilla group spearheaded fighting against Israeli forces in south Lebanon until their withdrawal in May 2000, ending a 22-year occupation.
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