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Iraqi Shi'ite militia leader visits Lebanese-Israeli border

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Iraqi Shi'ite militia leader visits Lebanese-Israeli border

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BEIRUT (Reuters) - The head of an Iran-backed Iraqi Shi'ite militia has visited Lebanon's border with Israel accompanied by allies from the Lebanese group Hezbollah, a video released on Saturday showed.

Qais al-Khazali, leader of the Iraqi paramilitary group Asaib Ahl al-Haq, declared his full readiness "to stand together with the Lebanese people and the Palestinian cause" in the face of the "Israeli occupation", according to video footage widely circulating on social media.

A commander in the alliance, who spoke to Reuters on condition of anonymity, said al-Khazali was accompanied by officers from Asaib Ahl al-Haq. He visited the entire border with "occupied Palestine".

It was not clear exactly when the visit took place.

Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah said in June that any future war waged by Israel against Syria or Lebanon could draw in thousands of fighters from countries including Iran and Iraq.

Iran's Revolutionary Guards, who established Hezbollah in Lebanon in 1982, have mobilised Shi'ite militias from around the region in recent years. They have fought Islamic State in Iraq and helped President Bashar al-Assad in the war in Syria.

(Reporting by Laila Bassam; Writing by Tom Perry; Editing by Andrew Bolton)

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