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Susan Rice, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, accused Hezbollah and other foreign players, particularly Syria, of trying to destabilize Lebanon. ((Brendan McDermid/Reuters))

The United States has accused Hezbollah, Iran and Syria of trying to destabilize Lebanon and undermine its sovereignty.

"Certain actors within and outside Lebanon — including Syria, Hezbollah, and Iran — may believe that escalating sectarian tensions will help them assert their own authority over Lebanon," Susan Rice, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, said in a statement. "However, these actors serve only to destabilize Lebanon and the region."

Syria, in particular, has shown "flagrant disregard" for Lebanon's sovereignty and political independence and continues to provide sophisticated weapons to Lebanese militias, including Hezbollah, contrary to UN Resolution 1680, Rice said.

"Hezbollah remains the most significant and most heavily armed Lebanese militia," she said. "It could not have done so if not for Syria's aid and facilitation of Syrian and Iranian arms, which also violates UN Security Council Resolution 1747."

Rice delivered the statement on behalf of the U.S. government to reporters outside the UN Security Council in New York City, where members were holding a closed-door meeting Thursday on Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's latest report on Lebanon.

With files from The Associated Press