Meet Cyprus: The European Nation Threatened by Hezbollah

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Hezbollah sympathizers raise their fists in support of a fiery speech by Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah (The New York Times)

The Secretary-General of Hezbollah, Hassan Nasrallah, in an explosive speech, proclaimed, “If war is placed on Lebanon, the resistance will fight without restraint, without rules, and without limits.”

“The enemy knows very well we have prepared ourselves for the very worst and most difficult days. And the enemy knows what awaits it, and that is why it was deterred for nine months”, he professes.

He was referring to the small, Greek-speaking island nation of the Republic of Cyprus. It joined the European Union (EU) in 2004, but did not join NATO – it is one of four other nations in the European Union that are not a part of the intergovernmental military alliance.

While Cyprus is a member of the EU, it is geographically more proximate to the conflicts occurring in the Middle East, meaning it is a strategic location for the EU in monitoring the happenings of the Levant and Middle East.

The island is split into the Republic of Cyprus, which speaks Greek, and the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), a Turkish-speaking region. Presently, only Türkiye recognizes the TRNC and reflects the everlasting butting of heads between Greeks and Turks.

Nasrallah’s comments were directed towards the internationally-recognized Republic of Cyprus.

Cyprus and Israel have a bilateral security accord, where both countries have conducted joint exercises as a show of force against any aggressors. 

Nasrallah has also said that Cyprus will be included in the Israel-Hamas War if they open their airports and bases to Israeli forces.

However, Cypriot President Nikos Christodoulides has denied any participation in the war.

Moreover, the European Union came to Cyprus’s protection, stating that it “is a member state of the EU, this means that the EU is Cyprus and Cyprus is the EU”, indicating that any aggression from Hezbollah will likely be met with a fierce response from the EU.

However, this does not mean the EU would ever enter the Israel-Hamas War on Israel’s side. The EU has shifted towards creating a Palestinian state, as they believe that this is “the only credible way to achieve peace in the Middle East.” This, along with the waning support of the United States in Israel has angered the Israeli executive branch.

“It’s inconceivable, that in the past few months, the administration has been withholding weapons and ammunition to Israel”, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel in a video targeted towards Americans.

However, his claims are largely baseless. The White House has said, during a press conference, “We genuinely don’t know what he is talking about…uh, we just don’t.” 

Netanyahu rebutted by declaring, “Israel is America’s closest ally, fighting for its life, fighting against Iran and our other common enemies.” He is feebly attempting to appeal to the United States Congress, as he wants aid in case of possible attacks on Cyprus, which likely will not occur in the first place, as proven by President Christodoulides of Cyprus’s statement. 

This video adds to a long list of fallacies portrayed by Israeli state actors. Glittering generalities and plain lies have been utilized by Israeli state actors in order to garner foreign support from powers that have been veering away from Israel.

Written by Eshan Korat

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