The Radicalization of the Shia Community in Italy: A Threat That Should Be Addressed

The Radicalization of the Shia Community in Italy A Threat That Should Be Addressed
The Radicalization of the Shia Community in Italy: A Threat That Should Be Addressed

 

 

Salafi-jihadi extremism has been considered a security threat in Europe for a long time, but Shia radical groups have shockingly been underestimated by many Western countries.

 

The main organizations are the Lebanese Hezbollah party, the Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, and several Shia militias from Iraq, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Yemen, and other countries.

 

Among the countries that have been the most decisive about Hezbollah’s nature are the US, the UK, The Netherlands, Japan, and Canada who have all blacklisted the group.

 

The United States designated Hezbollah as a Foreign Terrorist Organization in 1997. In 2008, the UK added the group’s military wing to the terrorism list, and later in 2019, the entire organization.

 

Recently, Serbia also blacklisted Hezbollah, as a concession to Israel and the US within the framework of negotiations with Kosovo mediated by Washington.

 

In April 2020, Germany declared the entire group a terrorist organization and police subsequently carried out raids on mosques linked to the group.

 

Other countries have been more reserved. In 2013, the European Union blacklisted the military wing of Hezbollah, but various EU member states have determined their own individual classifications.

 

For example, France designated Hezbollah’s military wing as a terrorist group, but it is still undecided about how to classify the entire organization.

 

In Spain, the centrist liberal party Ciudadanos pushed for the terrorism designation, but it has yet to be approved.

 

In September 2020, a Bulgarian court sentenced in absentia two Hezbollah operatives to life imprisonment for blowing up a tour bus in July 2012 in Burgas, killing five Israelis and their Bulgarian-Muslim bus driver, but the state prosecutor decided not to charge Hezbollah as an organization.

 

Shia presence in Italy

 

Italy, due to the sensitive relations with Lebanon and Iran, has left Hezbollah’s designation in a gray zone. When the then-Minister of Interior Matteo Salvini visited Israel in 2018, he called Hezbollah “Islamic terrorists”.

 

Read the complete article at NewsNow.com

 

Also Read: Iran’s Army May be Huge, but the IRGC is Tehran’s Real Power Broker

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