Lebanon’s former Prime Minister Saad Hariri remains in Saudi Arabia days after reports emerged alleging that he had been forcibly held in the country.
BEIRUT (Sputnik) – Lebanon’s President Michel Aoun called on Riyadh to clarify the reasons preventing Prime Minister Hariri from returning to Lebanon to join his relatives, people, and supporters,” according to the statement issued on Saturday.
The Lebanon president’s office also said that Aoun was waiting for Hariri to explain the circumstances of his resignation during a trip to Saudi Arabia. Moreover, the president reportedly refused to accept Hariri’s resignation from Riyadh.
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Saad Hariri announced resignation from the position of Lebanese Prime Minister in a video address from Riyadh on November 4. The prime minister expressed fear that he could be assassinated like his father in Lebanon and accused Tehran and the Iran-backed Hezbollah movement of attempts to destabilize the situation in his country, as well as across the Middle East. However, the Iranian Foreign Ministry said that Hariri’s accusations against Tehran were groundless. Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of Hezbollah, said that the Saudi Arabian government could have forced Hariri to resign.
Hariri served as prime minister from 2009 to 2011 and took the office again in November 2016. His father, Rafik Hariri, was killed in 2005 as a result of an explosion in Beirut. A special tribunal in The Hague charged five members of Hezbollah in connection with the murder.