BEIRUT Nov 15 Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan
Nasrallah urged Arab states on Thursday to use all political
means possible, including raising oil prices, to end Israeli air
strikes on Gaza, suggesting this could be as effective as
military attacks on the Jewish state.
The leader of Lebanon's powerful Shi'ite militant group,
which fought a war with Israel in 2006, called on countries with
ties to the United States and the West to pressure them to help
stop the air strikes.
"No one is telling Arab countries today, 'Please go open
your borders and begin the operation to liberate Palestine.'
What we want is to end the attack on Gaza," Nasrallah said in a
televised address to mark the first day of the Shi'ite holiday
"This is everyone's battle ... We're not asking you for a
solution, we're asking for effort."
Violence between Israel's armed forces and Palestinian
militants in Gaza has moved towards an all-out war as violence
continued for a second day, with 16 Palestinians and three
Nasrallah said Arab countries close to Washington and other
Western countries must urge them to exert pressure on Israel,
the main U.S. ally in the Middle East, and said that the
weakened American and European economies could give Arab
countries more influence.
"Some say the Arabs don't have the courage to stop oil
production," he said. "Decrease your oil exports to it or raise
the price a little and you will shake the United States, you
will shake Europe. Brothers, if you can't cut off oil, decrease
your production or raise the price. Put on some pressure. No one
is calling for armies or tanks or planes."
Hezbollah earlier condemned Israel's air strikes on Gaza,
calling the attack a "criminal aggression" and said any country
not working to stop the bloodshed was a partner in the violence.
But it gave no signal that it was prepared to act against the
Many analysts suspect that Hezbollah, a powerful political
and guerrilla movement in Lebanon, is loathe to start a conflict
with Israel right now. Israel has threatened to bomb the nuclear
sites of the group's main patron Iran and its supply routes
through neighbouring Syria may be at risk of being cut off by a
bloody conflict that could topple its ally President Bashar
In 2006, Hezbollah fought Israel in a 34-day war in which
1,2000 people in Lebanon, mostly civilians, and 160 Israelis,
mostly soldiers, were killed.