Fears of a fresh civil war mount in Lebanon as the indictment of Hezbollah members is nearing. The Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL) probably has evidence linking senior Hezbollah members to the assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri in 2005.
A recent article in Canada’s CBC showed a strong link between the group and the murder. The conclusions and indictments are expected soon by the prosecutor of the STL, Daniel Bellemare.
There are talks that the militant Shiite group Hezbollah (or Hizbullah), heavily armed by Iran, will take over the country if these accusations are made. Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan came to Beirut to try and calm things down. Also the Syrians and Saudis are working to defuse the situation.
The bigger fear is that a violent conflict in Lebanon could spill over to the whole region. Hezbollah may attack Israel in order to divert the fire to a bigger enemy. The Israeli cabinet is holding a meeting to get ready for a possible escalation of the situation.
A violent conflict in the Middle East will benefit the US dollar, the Japanese Yen and the Swiss Franc as safe haven currencies. Regarding the yen, it also depends on thetensions between North and South Korea. Another currency that will enjoy limited gains from such a conflict is the Canadian dollar, as the price of oil will jump in the oil-rich Middle East.
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