German police suspect the Lebanese militant group, Hezbollah, of using drug trafficking in Europe to fund part of its activities, German magazine Der Spiegel reported on Saturday.
According to the report published on the magazine's website, German police arrested two Lebanese citizens living in Germany last October after they transferred large sums of money to a family in Lebanon with connections to Hezbollah's leadership, including the Shiite group's Secretary General, Hassan Nasrallah.
Suspicion was first raised in May 2008, when police found 8.7 million Euros in the bags of four Lebanese men at the airport in Frankfurt.
Police searched the men's apartment in Speyer, Germany, and found an additional half a million Euros.
According to the report, police suspected the men were selling cocaine in Europe and sending the profits back to Lebanon.
The report added that the two suspects went through training at a Hezbollah camp. The suspects deny the charges against them.
Israel has in recent years accused Hezbollah of drug trafficking along the Lebanon-Israel border.
However, Nasrallah has denied Israel's charge of "narcoterrorism." In a speech last November, he accused Israel of trying to put a political spin on what in his view is simply a drug operation run by Lebanese drug dealers in collusion with Israeli border guards.
Israeli police say that based on evidence gathered from interrogating busted traffickers, nothing happens on the Lebanon-Israel border without Hezbollah's consent.
By Assaf Uni
January 9, 2010
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Report: Hezbollah funded by drug trade in Europe