Hezbollah Chief Nasrallah Emerges From Bunker – to Plant a Tree

Hezbollah launch campaign urging Lebanese citizens to plant one million trees around the country.

A television station run by Lebanon's militant Hezbollah group has aired a rare spot showing the group's reclusive leader emerging from hiding to plant a tree.

Nasrallah planting a tree, Reuters, October 8, 2010

Sheik Hassan Nasrallah has rarely been seen in public since his Shiite Muslim group battled Israel in a month-long 2006 war, fearing assassination. He gives news conferences via satellite link.

But on Friday, the black-turbaned cleric was shown on al-Manar TV, shovel in hand, planting and watering a small tree in the southern suburbs of Beirut outside his home that was bombed by Israel in the 2006 war.

Nasrallah then urged all Lebanese to plant a tree outside their homes as part of a Hezbollah campaign to plant one million trees in Lebanon.

"We wanted to plant this tree in this particular place, near our residence in Haret Heiek, which was destroyed during the 2006 war, to give a message to every Lebanese citizen," Nasrallah said.

"If every Lebanese plants a tree next to his house and pledged to take care and preserve it, imagine how our country would look like," Nasrallah added

The Iran-backed Hezbollah is part of Lebanon's fragile unity government.