Conflict & Justice

Hassan Nasrallah makes first public appearance since 2008 (VIDEO)


Lebanon's Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah makes his first public appearance since 2008 before a frenzied crowd in the southern suburbs of Beirut on December 6, 2011. Marking the Shiite commemoration of Ashura, Nasrallah spoke to the crowd of thousands assembled in his stronghold for only a few minutes and vowed to arm his fighters more heavily than ever.



Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of Hezbollah, made a speech Tuesday in Beirut, his first public appearance in Lebanon since 2008.

Nasrallah greeted crowds in the southern suburbs of Beirut - a mostly Shiite district - to commemorate Ashura, one of the holiest days for Shia Muslims.

"I wanted to be with you for few minutes ... to renew our pledge and for the world to hear us," Nasrallah said, according to the Associated Press.

The AP reported that Nasrallah’s appearance was “meant to portray confidence at a time of upheaval in the Middle East and particularly in Syria, which along with Iran is Hezbollah's backer.”

Nasrallah has kept a low profile since 2006, when Israel and Hezbollah fought a month-long war.

Gulf News described Nasrallah a “prime target” for Israel:

Considered a prime target for his arch-enemy Israel, Nasrallah last appeared in public in July 2008, on the occasion of the release of five Lebanese prisoners by the Jewish state.