Hezbollah says bombing allegations are Israeli smear campaign

BEIRUT Wed Feb 6, 2013 4:12pm GMT

Lebanon's Hezbollah deputy Sheikh Naim Qassem speaks during an interview with Reuters at his office in Beirut's suburbs, February 28, 2012. REUTERS/ Sharif Karim

Lebanon's Hezbollah deputy Sheikh Naim Qassem speaks during an interview with Reuters at his office in Beirut's suburbs, February 28, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/ Sharif Karim

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BEIRUT (Reuters) - Lebanon's militant Islamist Hezbollah movement on Wednesday dismissed Bulgaria's accusation that it had carried out a bomb attack that killed five Israelis last year, saying it was part of an Israeli smear campaign.

Deputy Hezbollah leader Naim Qassem said the accusation was part of "allegations and incitements and accusations against Hezbollah" pursued by Israel after it had failed to defeat Hezbollah militarily.

"All these accusations against Hezbollah will have no effect, and do not change the facts," Qassem said. "We will not submit to these pressures and we will not change our priorities. Our compass will remain directed towards Israel."

(Reporting by Laila Bassam; Editing by Kevin Liffey)

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