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It is wrong by Jonas Gahr Støre to blame Hezbollah for the war in Lebanon, says Nazih Salame, leader of the Lebanese association.


What do you think of Norway's handling of the situation in Lebanon?

- The government has not done as much as it should. Foreign Minister Jonas Gahr Støre has blamed Hezbollah for the war. That is wrong, and we ask him to watch more on Arab news channels and CNN, and not just Norwegian media. From the Norwegian population, I have received a lot of support. Several Norwegians have called and said they are worried about Lebanon and Lebanese in Norway.

What should the government do?

- Norway should put pressure on Israel. The Foreign Minister can do that if he wants to. We have thanked for the condemnation that Norway brought of the massacre in Qana, but Norway can do more.

How do Lebanese in Norway experience the situation in their home country? -

They experience it very strongly and sadly. We think what's happening is absolutely terrible. All Lebanese in Norway have relatives in Lebanon. We do as much as we can to support them.

But is Hezbollah right to hide behind civilians?

- It's not right, but what do you want them to do? They defend themselves. So far, more than 700 people have been killed in Lebanon, most of them children. In Israel, 10-15 people have been killed. It's bad, but it does not justify Israel's attacks on civilians. Israel has destroyed all of Lebanon.

Hezbollah has had regular actions against Israel since they withdrew from Lebanon in 2000. Was Hezbollah right to carry out attacks on Israel?

- Yes, because Israel has held Lebanese prisoners for 28 years. The people Hezbollah has captured are soldiers and not civilians. Israel kills civilians.

How do you think the Norwegian media has covered the conflict? – The media blames Hezbollah, without writing about what Israel is doing in Lebanon. I am not saying that the media should defend Hezbollah, but that they should also write about Israel taking hostages and bombing all the way. Israel has killed three Lebanese soldiers, although the Lebanese army is not involved. Nobody has written about it.

Nasih Salame was interviewed by Mikal Hem (

Lebanese in Norway:

  • There are 2000 Lebanese in Norway.
  • Lebanese Association has 750 members.
  • From July 31, representatives of the Lebanese Association demonstrate in front of the Storting against Israel's war in Lebanon.
  • The demonstrations will take place every day until the war in Lebanon is over.

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