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Bahrain: Lebanon Needs to Show that Hezbollah Can Change Behavior

Bahrain: Lebanon Needs to Show that Hezbollah Can Change Behavior

Saturday, 20 November, 2021 - 11:45
Bahraini Foreign Minister Abdullatif Al Zayani speaks at the Manama Dialogue security forum. Photo: International Institute for Strategic Studies

Bahrain's foreign minister, Abdullatif Al Zayani, said on Saturday that Lebanon needs to demonstrate that Hezbollah can change its behavior to mend a rift with Gulf Arab states.

"We (can) extend support and try to find solutions in the future, but once it is demonstrated that Hezbollah can be changing its behavior," Zayani told the IISS Manama Dialogue security forum in Bahrain.

Zayani participated in the third plenary session entitled "Diplomacy and Deterrence," which included Jordan's Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi and Iraq's Foreign Minister of Iraq Fuad Hussein.

The Bahraini official explained that deterrence no longer applies to the behavior of nation-states, as the world faces challenges from a host of state and non-state actors, including terrorist organizations, militias, proxy groups, and many others.

He added that what might be effective as deterrence against a nation-state may not be relevant in the case of non-state actors, reported the state news agency (BNA).

He also stressed the need to move beyond seeing deterrence through the lens of military action or sanctions and what might be called "hard power" deterrence.

In the post-COVID 19 era, nations need to look at deterrence as a broader range of potential outcomes that can be leveraged to influence the behavior of potential adversaries, suggesting that "hard power" deterrence can be complemented by cyber, economic, and social deterrence, said Zayani.

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