A Hezbollah supporter chants slogans, as he holds a picture of the late Iran revolutionary founder Ayatollah Khomeini, left, and Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, right. (AP)

April 6, 2020

Unknown gunmen fatally shot and stabbed a member of the militant Hezbollah group in southern Lebanon and an investigation was launched, Lebanese security officials said Sunday.

The body of Ali Mohammed Younes was found next to his car Saturday evening near the southern town of Nabatiyeh, said two security officials. One of them said Younes was shot with four bullets in the chest and had at least two stab wounds.

The motive behind the killing was no immediately clear, the officials said. They spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk to the media.

Lebanon’s state-run National News Agency said a suspect was detained shortly afterward Saturday.

Iran’s semiofficial Fars news agency described Younes as a commander with the Iran-backed Hezbollah. It added that Younes was involved in anti-espionage missions.

Fars also posted a photo said to be of Younes in blue jeans and bloodied white shirt next to his car.

Iran-backed Hezbollah is Lebanon’s strongest military force and a political powerhouse, and also boasts significant organizational and services might in the country.

There was no official comment from Hezbollah on the killing. A source in the organization confirmed Younes was a member, but would not provide further details.

Hezbollah has fought in neighboring Syria’s civil war to back the Iranian-allied government in Damascus. Hezbollah is also bitter enemies with Israel, and the two sides fought to a stalemate in a month-long war in 2006.

AP

About Track Persia

Track PersiaTrack Persia is a Platform run by dedicated analysts who spend much of their time researching the Middle East, in due process we fall upon many indications of growing expansionary ambitions on the part of Iran in the MENA region and the wider Islamic world. These ambitions commonly increase tensions and undermine stability.