Hashem Safieddine

Hashem Safieddine is responsible for overseeing Hezbollah’s political, social, cultural, and educational activities. Casey L. Addis and Christopher M. Blanchard, “Hezbollah: Background and Issues for Congress,” Congressional Research Service, January 3, 2011, 11, https://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/mideast/R41446.pdf. As the head of the Executive Assembly, Safieddine is one of seven elected members of Hezbollah’s ruling Shura Council.Jonathan Masters and Zachary Laub, “Hezbollah (a.k.a. Hizbollah, Hizbu’llah),” Council on Foreign Relations, January 3, 2014, http://www.cfr.org/lebanon/hezbollah-k-hizbollah-hizbullah/p9155. He is reportedly next in line to lead Hezbollah as the successor to Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah.Dudi Cohen, “Nasrallah replacement chosen,” YNet, October 13, 2008, http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3608528,00.html. Safieddine was designated as a terrorist by the United States and Saudi Arabia in May 2017.“State Department Terrorist Designations of Hashem Safieddine and Muhammad al-Isawi,” U.S. Department of State, May 19, 2017, https://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2017/05/270982.htm.

Safieddine has been part of Hezbollah’s hierarchy since the group’s inception in 1982.“Beirut Marine Barracks Bombing Fast Facts,” CNN, October 18, 2017, https://www.cnn.com/2013/06/13/world/meast/beirut-marine-barracks-bombing-fast-facts/index.html. In the 1980s, Safieddine reportedly received leadership training in Iran and in 1992, he took over the Executive Assembly after its previous head, Nasrallah, became secretary-general.“INSIGHT - HZ - More details on reshuffling,” Wikileaks, March 11, 2013, https://wikileaks.org/gifiles/docs/10/1012276_insight-hz-more-details-on-reshuffling-.html. After accusing Israel of planning to assassinate Hezbollah’s leadership, Nasrallah named Safieddine as his successor in October 2008Roee Nahmias, “Nasrallah: Georgia lost because of Israel,” YNet, August 14, 2008, http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3582864,00.html. and two months later named Safieddine his successor.Dudi Cohen, “Nasrallah replacement chosen,” YNet, October 13, 2008, http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3608528,00.html.

Safieddine has spoken forcefully against Israel and the U.S. and has guaranteed Hezbollah’s resolve as it fights on behalf of Syrian President Bashar Assad in his country’s civil war.“Designated terrorist Hashem Safieddine says Hezbollah ‘will not leave Syria’,” Al Arabiya English, July 22, 2018, http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2018/07/22/Blacklisted-Hezbollah-leader-says-Lebanese-militias-won-t-leave-Syria-.html. Safieddine is Nasrallah’s maternal cousin.“Syria and Iran Come to a Temporary Understanding over Hezbollah,” Stratfor, November 26, 2010, https://www.stratfor.com/analysis/syria-and-iran-come-temporary-understanding-over-hezbollah. His brother, Abdallah Safieddine, is Hezbollah’s representative in Tehran.Michael Isikoff, “Bank accused of laundering drug money for Hezbollah,” NBC News, February 10, 2011, http://www.nbcnews.com/id/41512092/ns/world_news-mideast_n_africa/t/bank-accused-laundering-drug-money-hezbollah/#.VQnZhY7F9ks.

Also Known As

Extremist entity
Hezbollah
Type(s) of Organization:
Militia, political party, social-service provider, terrorist, transnational, violent
Ideologies and Affiliations:
Iranian-sponsored, Islamist, jihadist, Khomeinist, Shiite
Position(s):
Head of Executive Assembly

Hezbollah is an Iranian-sponsored, internationally sanctioned terrorist group with an anti-Israel and anti-U.S. agenda. Hezbollah is primarily based in Lebanon, but has carried out terrorist and criminal operations around the world.

  • Designations
  • Rhetoric

United States

  • The U.S. Department of State lists Hashem Safieddine as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist under Executive Order 13224 in May 2017.“State Department Terrorist Designations of Hashem Safieddine and Muhammad al-Isawi,” U.S. Department of State, May 19, 2017, https://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2017/05/270982.htm.

Saudi Arabia

  • The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia designated Hashem Safieddine as a terrorist under its Law of Terrorism Crimes and Financing and Royal Decree A/44 in May 2017.“State Department Terrorist Designations of Hashem Safieddine and Muhammad al-Isawi,” U.S. Department of State, May 19, 2017, https://www.state.gov/r/pa/prs/ps/2017/05/270982.htm.

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