Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani announced on Sunday that Iran is keen on maintaining excellent bilateral ties with Lebanon, LBCI local TV channel reported.
“Lebanon is an influential country in the region and Iran is keen to always see that the country is free, sovereign and independent,” Larijani said upon his arrival at Beirut’s airport.
Larijani also congratulated Lebanon on its new government.
The Iranian Embassy to Lebanon announced earlier in the day that Larijani’s official visit aims at meeting with top officials to discuss latest developments in the region.
The visit is expected to raise concerns in the West especially that many political parties in the country have previously labeled Prime Minister Hassan Diab’s cabinet as the government of Hezbollah, the Iranian proxy in Lebanon.
Diab’s cabinet was mainly supported upon its appointment by the two political Shiite parties, Hezbollah and Amal Movement, and their ally the Free Patriotic Movement, whose founder is president Michel Aoun.
Representatives of Hezbollah and Amal welcomed Larijani at the airport . The Iranian ambassador and the Charge d’affair were also there to meet him and his accompanying delegation.
Larijani’s statement about Lebanon’s sovereignty , freedom and independence will not be taken very seriously by the Lebanese since the majority consider Lebanon an Iranian protectorate administered by Hezbollah . For Iran Hezbollah is Iran in Lebanon , just like the Houthis are Iran in Yemen as one top Iranian ayatollah who is close to the Supreme leader announce last September .
Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah put himself at the disposal of Iran’s supreme leader, Ali Khamenei, and stressed that any military strike against Iran “will ignite the whole region and annihilate countries and peoples.”
Last September during the marking of the last day of the Shiite Ashoura commemorations, Nasrallah voiced support for Iran in its dispute with the United States.
He said any war against Iran “will ignite the region and destroy countries and peoples. It will be a war against the entire axis of resistance,” and that Hezbollah is part of the axis of resistance.
On Khameni he said: “Our imam, leader, master and Hussein in this era is Grand Ayatollah Sayyed Ali Khamenei. He is the leader of the axis of resistance and Iran is the heart and main center of the axis.”