Le­banon be­lieves Hariri held in Saudi, wants for­eign pres­sure: top of­fi­cial

Daily Messenger - - International -

BEIRUT: Le­banon be­lieves Saad al-Hariri, who re­signed as prime min­is­ter on Satur­day while in Saudi Ara­bia, is be­ing held by Riyadh, and Beirut plans to work with for­eign states to se­cure his re­turn, a top Le­banese gov­ern­ment of­fi­cial said on Thurs­day.

Hariri’s shock res­ig­na­tion read from Saudi Ara­bia pitched Le­banon into a deep po­lit­i­cal cri­sis and pushed the coun­try back to the fore­front of a re­gional strug­gle be­tween Saudi Ara­bia and Iran. It has fu­eled spec­ula- tion in Le­banon that the Sunni Mus­lim politi­cian, long an ally of Riyadh, was co­erced into step­ping down by the Saudis.

Asec­ond source, a se­nior Le­banese politi­cian who is close to Hariri, said: “When he went (to Saudi Ara­bia) he was asked to stay there and or­dered to re­sign. They or­dered him to read his res­ig­na­tion state­ment and he has been held un­der house ar­rest since.”

Saudi Ara­bia and Hariri aides have de­nied re­ports that he is un­der house ar­rest. But he has put out no state­ments him­self deny­ing his move­ments are be­ing re­stricted. He made a one­day fly­ing visit to theUnited Arab Emi­rates ear­lier this week be­fore re­turn­ing to Saudi Ara­bia.

Le­banese Pres­i­dent Michel Aoun is mov­ing to­ward a diplo­matic ap­proach to “un­cover the mys­tery sur­round­ing Hariri’s res­ig­na­tion”, Le­banon’s al-Ma­nar tele­vi­sion, which sup­ports Iran­backed Shi‘ite move­ment Hezbol­lah, re­ported.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Pakistan

© PressReader. All rights reserved.