Monday, August 21, 2006

Iranians upset at Government's financial aid to Hezbollah in Lebanon

Ali Nourizadeh, Asharq Al-Awsat-- The Iranian government's pledge of 500 million dollars to Hezbollahhas angered many Iranians who say they are still awaiting money to help rebuild their homes that were damaged by wars and natural disasters, informed sources told Asharq Al-Awsat.

The anger is particularly fierce in the Khuzestan district, which sustained severe damage during the Iran-Iraq war, and in Bam, which was hit hard by an earthquake three years ago.
Hezbollah is reportedly handing out wads of cash to residents of southern Lebanon to help rebuild their homes. The money is thought to originate from Tehran, but Iran is downplaying allegations that it has allocated hundreds of millions of dollars in aid to Lebanon.

...Informed sources” told Asharq Al-Awsat that spontaneous demonstrations were staged in Bam and in Khuzestan on Friday as protesters shouted slogans critical of Hezbollah and the government. They were demanding their homes be rebuilt instead of the government intervening in Lebanese affairs.