Congress takes aim at Lebanese politicians with Hezbollah bill

The US House of Representatives is expected to vote this month on legislation requiring the president to publicly report on Hezbollah allies’ net worth.

Members of Lebanon's Hezbollah wave Hezbollah and Lebanese flags during a rally marking the ninth anniversary of the end of Hezbollah's 2006 war with Israel, in Wadi al-Hujeir, southern Lebanon, Aug. 14, 2015. (photo by REUTERS/Aziz Taher)

Congress is moving ahead with a Hezbollah sanctions bill that targets the Iran-backed Shiite militia’s allies in government, sending shock waves across Lebanon’s political elite.

The House Foreign Affairs Committee passed legislation from Chairman Ed Royce, R-Calif., last week that tightens the screws on Hezbollah’s illicit funding streams abroad, setting up a vote in the full House later this month. The bill notably calls on the US president to publicly disseminate US estimates of Hezbollah and allied politicians’ net worth, a highly controversial move in a country where corruption is rampant.

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