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WASHINGTON (AFP) – The United States on Monday applauded the EU’s designation of the military wing of the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah as a “terrorist organization,” U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said.

“With today’s action, the EU is sending a strong message to Hezbollah that it cannot operate with impunity,” Kerry said in a statement, calling the move by the European Union “an important step.”

European Union foreign ministers on Monday put the military wing of the Lebanese Shiite group Hezbollah on its list of terrorist organizations despite Lebanon warning against such a move.

At the same time, analysts voiced doubts about the effectiveness of the measure, questioning if Hezbollah really can be broken down into separate parts for punishment or reward.

Kerry said the designation showed “there are consequences” for Hezbollah’s actions, “including last year’s deadly attack in Burgas, Bulgaria, and for plotting a similar attack in Cyprus.

“This designation will have a significant impact on Hezbollah’s ability to operate freely in Europe by enabling European law enforcement agencies to crack down on Hezbollah’s fundraising, logistical activity, and terrorist plotting on European soil.”

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Jeff Danziger lives in New York City. He is represented by CWS Syndicate and the Washington Post Writers Group. He is the recipient of the Herblock Prize and the Thomas Nast (Landau) Prize. He served in the US Army in Vietnam and was awarded the Bronze Star and the Air Medal. He has published eleven books of cartoons, a novel and a memoir. Visit him at DanzigerCartoons.

Doug Mastriano

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Doug Mastriano is a QAnon conspiracy theorist and January 6 insurrectionist who this week won the Republican nomination for Pennsylvania governor. Mastriano is also anti-Muslim: He previously shared an image with the words, “Stop Islam” and a post claiming that “the American People have a right to be fearful of the prospect of a large number of muslims being elected to congress, specifically if they practice Sharia law.”

In addition to running for governor, Mastriano is a Pennsylvania state senator, a right-wing commentator, and a frequent guest in right-wing media. He regularly pushes lies about the 2020 election being stolen from former President Donald Trump.

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