For Hizballah, the official Russian communiqué announcing its visit, was tantamount to international recognition as a force with a say in the region, as well as boosting the prestige of its masters in Tehran. The Russians stressed that they would discuss with their Lebanese visitors „the situation in the Middle East including the recent events in Libya, Palestine, Syria and Yemen“ – a singular honor for a group banned as terrorists by the United States, Israel and most Western countries. (…)
The Russians are therefore using Hizballah and its close ties with Hamas as a vehicle for cautioning the Palestinian organization not to desert Damascus and Bashar Assad. Hamas maintains military command centers in Beirut which operate under the aegis and protection of Hizballah, whereas Hizballah maintains military advisers in the Gaza Strip.