Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 25 August 2019

UAE jails Hezbollah-linked terror suspects over explosives plot

Six men will serve between 10 years and life in jail

The US and UAE consider Hezbollah a terrorist group. Mohammed Zaatari / AP
The US and UAE consider Hezbollah a terrorist group. Mohammed Zaatari / AP

Six terror suspects linked to Hezbollah have been convicted of plotting to set off explosives at a facility in the UAE.

Four men were jailed for life and two were each handed ten years in prison. Another man was fined Dh3,000 for possessing an unlicensed firearm.

A further five - a Syrian and four Lebanese nationals - were cleared of all charges.

State Security prosecutors said the men acted as a terrorist cell under the instructions of Iran-backed militant group Hezbollah.

They said the group carried out a mock attack in a yard to test how the incident would unfold. The facility the men planned to attack with remote detonated bombs was not made public.

The cell was also accused of collecting sensitive information and photographs of ports and airports. The material was sent to Hezbollah and later Iran, the court heard.

The Federal Appeals Court described the convicted men as Arab without stating their nationalities or full names, as is routine. Three of the original cell arrested were tried in absentia.

The circumstances of their arrest are not clear but it is understood they were arrested last year.

Hezbollah - which is listed as a terrorist group by the US, UK and UAE - sent more than 7,000 fighters to Syria to prop up the regime of Bashar Al Assad and has made millions from drugs and money laundering, the United States says.

In March, leader Hassan Nasrallah urged supporters to wage “jihad with money” as sanctions begin to impact the group.

Updated: May 15, 2019 08:38 PM

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