Hariri says Bourj Abi Haidar clashes target him, report


As-Safir newspaper quoted on Tuesday an unnamed source as saying that Prime Minister Saad Hariri told Syrian President Bashar al-Assad during the former’s Syria visit that last week’s Borj Abi Haidar clashes target him.

Lebanese soldiers patrol the area after clashes erupted between supporters of the Shiite Hezbollah and Sunni conservative Al-Ahbash group, in Borj Abu Haidar area near Beirut's downtown, Lebanon, Tuesday, Aug. 24, 2010.

This comes following the deadly clashes in the Beirut neighborhood of Borj Abi Haidar on Tuesday August 24 between supporters of the the pro-Syrian Association of Islamic Charitable Projects—also known as Al-Ahbash—and the Iranian backed Hezbollah militants , leading to the death of three people, including Hezbollah official Mohammad Fawwaz.

Both Al-Ahbash and Hezbollah enjoy close relations with the Syrian regime.

As-Safir is also closely linked to Syria

Hariri traveled to Syria Sunday night for talks with Assad, according to a statement released by the PM’s office.

The daily added that Assad commended the Lebanese army and reinforced his support for the military institution.

On Sunday, Hezbollah MP Mohammad Raad accused Hariri ( without naming him) of exploiting the Borj Abi Haidar incident to promote sectarian strife in Beirut.

“Some people are insisting on making statements with slogans and incitement that only serve to fuel the fire of division and strife. These voices are not keen to protect society, the people or the state, irrespective of (the call to) protect society and build the state,” Raad said about Hariri without naming him.