Saudi envoy urges wisdom, patience, dialogue


Prime Minister Saad Hariri met on Tuesday evening at the Grand Serail with Saudi Ambassador to Lebanon Ali Awadh Assiri.

Following the meeting, Assiri told reporters : “We appeal to everyone in Lebanon to exercise wisdom and patience, and constructive dialogue in order to attain solutions that satisfy everyone.”

“All parties are up to the responsibility and this country is very dear to everyone, and what is required during these circumstances is wisdom,” he added.

Assiri reassured the Lebanese that Lebanon was “on the verge of good things to happen ….. tourists will be coming to Lebanon in large number … adding that “patience is the key to relief.”

Last Friday Assiri hosted dinner at his residence for Syrian Ambassador to Lebanon Ali Abdul Karim Ali, Egyptian ambassador Ahmed al-Bidiawi and Iranian Ambassador to Lebanon Ghazanfar Roknabadi. The meeting was aimed at reducing tension in Lebanon.

Syria and Saudi Arabia have been attempting to reduce tensions in Lebanon, according to local reports.

Tension escalated in Lebanon following reports that the Special Tribunal for Lebanon will soon issue its indictment into the 2005 assassination of Lebanon’s former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri. Last July, the Hezbollah chief Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah said that the tribunal is “an Israeli project” that will indict Hezbollah members. Nasrallah accused Israel of being behind Hariri’s assassination but refused to provide the evidence to STL to support his claim. Hezbollah and its March 8 allies have been calling for the abolition of STL.

Some leaders are concerned that should the court indict Hezbollah members, it could lead to a repeat of the My 2008 incident when Hezbollah gunmen occupied west Beirut and tried but failed to occupy Mt Lebanon, resulting in the killing of over one hundred Lebanese.

The Pro Syrian Al Akhbar newspaper reported in early November that Hezbollah has prepared a plan to take over Lebanon when STL issues its indictment for the 2005 murder of the late Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.

Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun , (a close ally of Hezbollah ) said on November 18 that Hezbollah might violently respond to an STL indictment that accuses Hezbollah party’s members in Hariri’s assassination.

On December 7 a leading Israeli Military Intelligence official expressed concerns that Hezbollah might seize control of Lebanese government institutions .

Saudi Ambassador to Lebanon Ali Awadh Assiri ( L) with Lebanese prime minister Saad Hariri at the Grand Serail

“Dozens will be killed when Hezbollah uses force and takes over government institutions,” senior Military Intelligence official Colonel Yossi Adler told the Knesset in ‘a possible scenario if Hezbollah is indicted by STL.’



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