Iranian IRGC eyes Lebanon’s energy through its Hezbollah proxy

Iran’s offer to help Lebanon build two power stations amid its current electricity crisis has been dismissed as a publicity stunt in Lebanon and derided in Iran, where the population also faces rolling blackouts. When the offer was first made, in October 2021, critics accused Hezbollah of seeking to exploit the crisis to invite experts and technicians from the Iranian IRGC (Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps) onto Lebanese soil.

During a March 24-25 visit to Beirut, Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian reiterated an earlier offer to help Lebanon build two power plants.

This time around, Lebanese economists were quick to point out that Iran itself is suffering from a power generation crisis.

They also noted that accepting Iranian assistance would further strain Lebanon’s relations with its Arab and Gulf neighbours, which Lebanon seeks to repair, and which recently have been on the mend.

Lebanese economist Violette Ghazal al-Balaa likened Amir-Abdollahian’s recent visit to a “diplomatic raid” on Beirut’s political decision to restore relations with its Arab and Gulf neighbours.

The Iranian move is an attempt to disrupt these relationships and “keep Lebanon in Iran’s political sphere”, she said.

Lebanese Centre for Research and Studies head Hassan Qutb said the Iranian proposal to build power plants is a “stunt and not serious because Iran itself has been suffering from a power generation and distribution crisis since 2021”.

Last July, this triggered widespread unrest and protests in Iran, he said, suggesting that the Iranian regime fix its own crisis before it steps in to try and resolve the issues Lebanon is facing.

The Lebanese Hezbollah, involved in terrorist attacks, drug trafficking, weapon smuggling, and money laundering, was founded by Ayatollah Khomeini and funded, armed, and trained by Iran’s terrorist designated Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC).

The militia that acts as a proxy group for Iranian IRGC has been involved in countless terrorist attacks and illegal activities following the direct orders of Iran’s supreme leader Ali Khamenei and has been trying to overthrow the elected government of Lebanon.

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