Saturday, 25 November, 2017

Saudis Deny Forcing Lebanese Prime Minister To Resign, Blame Hizballah

People search under the rubble of houses destroyed by Saudi-led airstrikes in Sanaa Yemen. The Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen is blaming a rebel missile launch on Iran and warning it could be “considered as an France believes Hariri free of movements in Saudi
Erik Tate | 11 November, 2017, 01:05

Hariri said Hezbollah and Iran had brought Lebanon into the "eye of a storm" of international sanctions.

"I have sensed what is being plotted covertly to target my life", said Hariri from the Saudi capital Riyadh, also mentioning that "we are living in a climate similar to the atmosphere that prevailed before the assassination of martyr Rafik Al Hariri", his father who was assassinated in 2005 in an attack blamed on Shiite Hizbollah, whose main backer is Iran.

"With [Syrian President] Bashar al-Assad clearly having survived the challenge posed by Saudi-backed rebels, the Saudi leadership may hope to move its confrontation with Iran from Syria to Lebanon".

Lebanon's internal security force said in a statement on the reports that it had no information about the matter and denied it was the source of the news.

Lebanese authorities said on Monday that the country's financial institutions could cope with Hariri's resignation and the stability of the Lebanese pound was not at risk.

The resignation marks the end of a shaky Shia-Sunni political alliance forming the government, which has somewhat managed to keep away the violence battering neighbouring Syria.

Hizballah is both a military and a political organisation that is represented in the Lebanese parliament and in the Hariri-led coalition government formed last year. It gave no further details on the nature of any threat.

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Sabhan responded by saying that Hizballah is the one that controls major decisions in Lebanon.

Hezbollah's leader, Hassan Nasrallah, has said Saudi Arabia forced Lebanese prime minister Saad al-Hariri to step down.

Nasrallah said "legitimate questions" were being asked over whether Hariri had been detained in Saudi Arabia, where news emerged on Sunday that royals, ministers and investors had been arrested in an anti-corruption purge.

"The resignation was aimed at creating tension in Lebanon and the region".

Hariri has visited Saudi Arabia twice in the past week, meeting Crown Prince Mohammed and other senior officials. Aoun must appoint the candidate with most support among MP's, who he is expected to consult in the coming days. Iran was sowing strife, destruction and ruin wherever it went and accused it of a "deep hatred for the Arab nation", he said. Central Bank Governor Riad Salameh sought to calm fears the political turmoil would hit Lebanon's already fragile economy, issuing a statement to reaffirm the stability of its currency, which is pegged against the US dollar.

The government's collapse complicates preparations for next year's parliamentary elections, Lebanon's first since 2009.

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