Ex-MK Bishara says will head bid to try U.S., Israeli 'war criminals'
Former Israeli Arab lawmaker Israel accuses of spying for Hezbollah speaks during south Lebanon village tour.
Former Israeli Arab MK and Balad chairman, Azmi Bishara, accused by Israel of spying for Hezbollah during the Second Lebanon War told a Lebanese newspaper he will head an international push to try "the war criminals, Israel and America".
Bishara made the statement while touring south Lebanon, where he was hosted by Hezbollah's media division. He said Israel and the United States would be condemned for the damage they caused to Lebanon during last year's war.
On his tour, he visited Hezbollah battle headquarters north of the Israeli town of Avivim, and Bint Jbail where he laid wreaths on the graves of civilians killed in the fighting last summer. Bishara also visited Kfar Qana where an Israel Air Forces strike killed 29 in the community center during the Second Lebanon War.
Bishara called the attack on Kfar Qana the worst civilian slaughter since Deir Yassin in 1948, adding that these incidents made the "long-awaited agreement with the Zionist entity an impossibility".
In a speech Friday, Bishara praised Hezbollah saying it is now stronger than ever.
"Everybody envies the Lebanese for their resistance [Hezbollah] and its leadership, but I envy the resistance for its people," said Bishara, according to comments carried by the state-run National News Agency.
Bishara also condemned Israeli attacks against innocent Lebanese civilians during the fighting last year.
"The massacres that were carried out by Israel were not a coincidence but were a strategic policy to frighten people," he said.
He praised Hezbollah for its performance during the 34-day war last summer, which was triggered by Hezbollah's capture of two Israeli soldiers in a cross border guerrilla raid.
"I am convinced that Israel has become incapable of attacking Lebanon again, and that is a very big achievement for the resistance," he said.
"Hezbollah has rearmed itself in the last year and perhaps is now stronger than ever, he added," according to the NNA. He did not elaborate.
Bishara left Israel in early June after being grilled twice by investigators and later resigned his Parliament seat. Police said he would be arrested immediately if he returns to Israel on charges of espionage for Hezbollah.
Both he and Hezbollah have denied the accusations. He has said he is a victim of political persecution.
Bishara has antagonized many Israelis over the years by meeting with some of Israel's bitterest enemies, including the leaders of Syria and Hezbollah. A Christian from the Israeli town of Nazareth who joined parliament in 1996, he has frequently spoken out in favor of Palestinian rights.