“It is a real war that we must confront with the mindset of a warrior,” Sayyed Hashem Safieddine, head of the movement’s executive council, said. “Our role is to complement the government apparatus and not to stand in its place,” he said, presenting Hezbollah’s plan on al-Manar TV.
Lebanon has recorded 333 coronavirus cases so far. Six people have died from the respiratory disease. The government has declared a medical emergency.
Hezbollah is deploying 1,500 doctors, 3,000 nurses and paramedics and 20,000 more activists in its plan, Safieddine said, according to Reuters. “Frontline Islamic Resistance medics are taking part in this plan,” he said.
Hezbollah had dedicated a Beirut hospital it owns to treating coronavirus patients, rented four disused hospitals, prepared 32 medical centres across Lebanon and laid plans for three field hospitals if needed. It has also rented hotels to be used for quarantine, Safieddine said.
The weak state faces its coronavirus outbreak at a time of unprecedented financial crisis. The government declared this month it could not pay foreign currency debts and the local currency has sunk by some 40% since October.
Safieddine said government hospitals would be supported through supplying volunteer medical and nursing teams.
Work would be in line with World Health Organization and Health Ministry protocols, he said.
“Managing crises and managing wars ... are not that different.”
The plan includes monitoring those confirmed to be infected with the virus to ensure compliance with guidelines and following up on those in quarantine or isolated at home.