The imposition of terror-related sanctions by the US Treasury on sitting members of parliament in another country is a story one would expect major media outlets to cover and indeed the New York Times, the Washington Post and the AP and Reuters news agencies, among many others, have done just that.
The BBC, however, has to date chosen to ignore the July 9th announcement concerning the designation of three members of Hizballah.
“Today, the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) designated key Hizballah political and security figures leveraging their privileged positions to facilitate Hizballah’s malign agenda and do Iran’s bidding. Specifically, OFAC designated Hizballah Members of Parliament Amin Sherri and Muhammad Hasan Ra’d, and Hizballah security official Wafiq Safa, for acting for or on behalf of Hizballah. These individuals were designated under Executive Order (E.O.) 13224, which targets terrorists and those providing support to terrorists or acts of terrorism.”
“It was the first time the U.S. Treasury had placed Hezbollah lawmakers on its blacklist, which forbid U.S. individuals and businesses with a U.S. branch – including leading international banks – from doing business with those sanctioned.
“It is time we believe for other nations around the world to recognize that there is no distinction between Hezbollah’s political and military wing,” a senior administration official who insisted on anonymity told journalists.”
Reuters reported that:
“Lebanon’s dollar-denominated sovereign bonds fell and the cost of insuring exposure to its debt rose on Wednesday after the sanctions move. […]
Lebanon is saddled with one of the heaviest public debt burdens in the world.”
Meanwhile, the most recent entry on the BBC News website’s ‘Lebanon’ page dates from June 24th.