*This article is part of a series of articles dealing with the structure of Hezbollah in general with the various councils and the executive council on its various civilian entities in particular (See introduction here).
The Deciding Shura Council is Hezbollah’s Supreme Council, headed by the organization’s leader, Hassan Nasrallah. The Shura Council is Hezbollah’s supreme and central decision-making authority. The five councils responsible for all Hezbollah activities are under the deciding Shura Council. The five councils are the Jihad Council (responsible for military activity), the Executive Council (responsible for civilian activity), the Judicial council (a Shiite court for Hezbollah individuals), the Parliamentary Oversight Council (responsible for monitoring Hezbollah’s parliamentary and political activities), and the Political Consulting Council (responsible for political and governmental advice to the Deciding Shura Council, and is responsible for contact with other political groups).
The council members are elected by hundreds of members of the organization’s “General Committee,” who are selected from among the “preparatory committees” composed of members of all groups in the organization. One of the main functions of the Shura Council is to decide on the identity of the leader and renew his term every three years. However, since Nasrallah’s election in 1992, the renewal of his term seems to be purely a technical matter.
Besides Nasrallah, who heads it, the following are the members of the Deciding Shura Council (all under American sanctions):
Deputy Secretary-General-Naeem Qasim. Born in 1953 and is one of Hezbollah’s founders. He has served in many positions in Hezbollah, including the head of the Executive Council. He is in charge of the MPs and the Parliamentary Oversite Council.
Head of the Executive Council. Hashem Safi al-Din was born in 1964. In practice, he is considered to be number two after Nasrallah. In 1995 he served as head of the Jihad Council.
Head of the Jihad Council. After the death of Mustafa Badr al-Din (May 2016, apparently eliminated in an internal assassination within Hezbollah), who served as head of the Jihad Council. It appears that the role of Hezbollah’s “Chief of Staff” was split; we do not know who sits on behalf of the Jihad Council in the Deciding Shura.
Head of the Political Council. Ibrahim al- Amine al-Sayyid, born in 1953. Al-Sayyid is a former Member of Parliament, and he holds a Doctorate of Physics and Chemistry from the University of Orléans, France. Al-Sayyid is a cleric who studied in Qom. He has served as chairman of the Political-GovernmentalCouncil since 2001, replacing Mohammad Ra’ad. In the past, he was a member of the Amal movement and even served as a representative of the Amal movement in Iran, but was persuaded by the Iranians to join Hezbollah.
Head of the Judicial Council. Mohammad Yazbek, was born in 1950. He is one of Hezbollah’s founders, and he served as a senior military and economic figure in Hezbollah before this position.
Head of the Parliamentary Oversight Council. Muhammad Raad also serves as head of Hezbollah’s opposition loyalist faction. He also previously served as head of the Political Council.
In addition to the above senior figures, it is possible that among the Deciding Shura Council, there are two more figures; Hossein al-Khalil, who is considered a confidant of Nasrallah, and Jawad Noor al-Din, who serves as the head of the Shahid organization operating under the Executive Council and is responsible for caring and perpetuating the families of Hezbollah martyrs.