The Lebanese Presidency has denied “false and baseless” reports that it had awarded citizenship to one of Ghasem Soleimani’s three daughters, who is married to the son of Hezbollah’s second-in-command.
On Monday the Lebanese TV station Al-Hadath and news website Al-Arabiya that President Michel Aoun had issued a decree granting Lebanese nationality to Zeinab Soleimani.
The 29-year-old rose to prominence after the death of her father, the former commander of the IRGC’s expeditionary Quds Force, who was killed by a US drone strike in Baghdad in January 2020.
Her husband Reza Safieddine is the son of Hashem Safieddine, head of the Executive Council of Hezbollah’s political wing.
Reza has been blacklisted by the US since 2018 for allegedly recruiting people to carry out suicide bombings in Israel and the West Bank. In May this year, the Israel Defense Forces accused him of regularly smuggling weapons from Iran to Hezbollah in Lebanon.
News that Zainab Soleimani might have been gifted Lebanese nationality by the president was met with alarm from online observers.
On Monday afternoon the official Twitter account of the Presidency addressed the rumor, stating: “The media office confirms this news is false and baseless.”
In reality, as the foreign wife of a Lebanese citizen, Zainab Soleimani could apply for citizenship after a year of marriage with no need for a presidential decree. Whether or not she has done so has not been confirmed.