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United States Condemns Violence in Lebanon

Statement by Secretary Condoleezza Rice
Washington, DC
May 9, 2008

The United States is deeply concerned about the ongoing violence in Lebanon. We condemn the use of force by illegitimate armed groups and call upon all parties to respect the rule of law.

Backed by Syria and Iran, Hezbollah and its allies are killing and injuring fellow citizens, undermining the legitimate authority of the Lebanese government and the institutions of the Lebanese state.

Seeking to protect their state-within-a-state, Hezbollah has exploited its allies and demonstrated its contempt for its fellow Lebanese. No one has a right to deprive Lebanese citizens of their political and economic freedom, their right to move freely within their country, or their sense of safety and security.

Our support for the legitimate Lebanese government, its democratic institutions, and its security services is unwavering. This support is a reflection of our unshakeable commitment to the Lebanese people and their hope for democratic change, economic prosperity, and confessional harmony.

We will stand by the Lebanese government and peaceful citizens of Lebanon through this crisis and provide the support they need to weather this storm.

2008/366



Released on May 9, 2008

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