Hassan Nasrallah Biography
Born in 1960 in East Beirut, Nasrallah from a young age was described as a remarkable student devoted to the teachings of Islam.
In 1975, the Lebanese civil war forced his family to return to their ancestral home in the south Lebanon village of Bazzouriyeh.
There Nasrallah, 15, joined the Amal movement, a political and paramilitary organisation representing Shia in Lebanon.
From south Lebanon, young Nasrallah travelled to Najaf, Iraq, for Quranic studies at a seminary.
In 1978, Nasrallah and other Shia clerics and students considered by the Baath government to be “radical” were forced to leave Iraq and return to Lebanon.
Nasrallah then studied and taught at Amal leader Sheikh Abbas al-Musawi’s school.
Rise of Hezbollah
In 1982, after the Israeli invasion, Nasrallah followed Musawi out of Amal and into an umbrella organisation called Hezbollah.
Hezbollah is backed by Iran.
In 1992, the Israeli military assassinated al-Musawi along with his wife and three children.
Nasrallah, at the request of Iran’s Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, took over the movement’s leadership.
Under Nasrallah’s leadership, Hezbollah became a serious opponent of the Israeli forces in southern Lebanon.
His standing in the country was strengthened after his son was killed by Israeli forces in 1996.
Hezbollah attacks on the Israeli armed forces were an important factor in Israel’s decision to withdraw from south Lebanon in 2000.
The achievement has greatly bolstered the party’s national political standing.
“I don’t believe in the state of Israel as a legal state because it was founded on occupation”
Sayed Hassan Nasrallah
After the Israeli withdrawal, Nasrallah was at the helm of a complex exchange of prisoners with Israel, resulting in hundreds of Palestinian and Hezbollah members being freed and bodies of fighters returned to Lebanon.
Hezbollah’s position, along with that of Syria and the Lebanese government, is that the Israeli withdrawal from Lebanon is not complete, with Lebanon claiming sovereignty over the Shebaa Farms.
The UN says the border area is an Israeli-occupied Syrian land unless Beirut and Damascus amend their border.
Nasrallah continues to call for the “continued resistance” against Israeli occupation of Lebanon.
He is also a strong opponent of the state of Israel.
“I don’t believe in the state of Israel as a legal state because it was founded on occupation,” he said in an interview in 2000.
Nasrallah, who lives in south Beirut, is married and has three children.
The Hezbollah chief is said to enjoy reading the memoirs of political figures. He has read Ariel Sharon’s autobiography, as well as Binyamin Netanyahu’s A Place Under the Sun.
Hassan Nasrallah Biography and Profile:
Hassan Nasrallah Fast Facts
Birth date: August 31, 1960
Birth place: Beirut, Lebanon
Father: Abd al-Karim, who worked as a grocer
Hassan Nasrallah Wife: Fatima Yassin (also referred to as: Hassan Nasrallah Fatima Yassin or Fatima Yassin Nasrallah)
Children: Muhammad Hadi (died in 1997), Muhammad Jawad, Zeinab, Muhammad Ali and Muhammad Mahdi
Education: Islamic seminaries in Iran and Iraq
Hassan Nasrallah Religion: Shiite Muslim
Hassan Nasrallah Biography – Other Facts:
Oldest of nine children.
Wears a black turban to signify that he is a descendant of the Prophet Muhammad.
Hassan Nasrallah Biography Timeline
After civil war breaks out in Lebanon, the Nasrallah family leaves Beirut and moves to a village near Tyre.
Nasrallah moves to Najaf, Iraq, to attend a Shiite seminary.
Is expelled from Iraq during a time of Shiite repression (President Saddam Hussein was a Sunni) and returns to Lebanon along with his mentor, Abbas Musawi. Musawi establishes a religious school in Baalbeck, where Nasrallah teaches and studies.
Member of the Shiite Amal movement during Lebanon’s civil war.
Organizes a group to fight against the Israeli occupation of Lebanon. This group eventually evolves into Hezbollah.
Studies at a seminary in Qom, Iran.
Musawi becomes the secretary-general of Hezbollah. Nasrallah returns to Lebanon.
Replaces Musawi as secretary-general of Hezbollah after Musawi is killed by an Israeli helicopter strike.
Nasrallah’s son, Muhammad Hadi, is killed in a clash with Israeli forces.
July 12, 2006
Hezbollah militants cross the border into Israel and capture two soldiers during a raid; a 34-day conflict ensues.
September 22, 2006
Nasrallah makes his first public appearance since the beginning of the conflict in July, addressing hundreds of thousands of people at a rally in Beirut.
November 30, 2006
In a speech broadcast on television, Nasrallah calls for peaceful protests to secure the resignation of Lebanese Prime Minister Fouad Siniora and the creation of a national unity government.
The next day, security sources estimate that at least 200,000 protesters gather in the streets of Beirut.
Declares the government’s move to shut down Hezbollah’s communications network “a declaration of open war.” Armed conflict breaks out between Hezbollah fighters and pro-government militias.
May 21, 2008
After five days of talks, representatives from the Hezbollah-led opposition and Lebanon’s Western-backed government reach an agreement ending the 18-month political crisis.
May 25, 2013
In a televised speech, Nasrallah publicly acknowledges for the first time that Hezbollah fighters are in Syria battling in support of President Bashar al-Assad’s regime.
Joins calls for a Palestinian uprising following the United States’ recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
October 25, 2018
US President Donald Trump signs legislation imposing sanctions on Hezbollah. The legislation, known as the Hizballah International Financing Prevention Amendments Act, was sponsored by Senator Marco Rubio of Florida.
The bill increases reporting requirements and places further financial and economic sanctions on the group.