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US to sanction leader of Lebanon's Free Patriotic Movement

November 6, 2020 at 8:32 am

Former Lebanese Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil in Beirut, Lebanon [Ratib Al Safadi/Anadolu Agency]

The United States is planning to sanction Gebran Bassil, the leader of Lebanon’s Free Patriotic Movement party, which was founded by President Michel Aoun and is allied with Hezbollah, the Wall Street Journal reported late on Thursday, Reuters reports.

US President Donald Trump’s administration is expected on Friday to impose the sanctions on Bassil for assisting his ally, the Lebanese Shi’ite group Hezbollah, the newspaper reported, citing sources.

The US Department of Treasury did not immediately respond to a Reuters request for comment outside regular working hours.

The United States deems Iranian-backed Hezbollah, which is a powerful political presence in Lebanon, to be a terrorist group. It has sanctioned several Hezbollah members.

Bassil, the son-in-law of Lebanon’s president and head of the Christian-led FPM, is also a former foreign minister.

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