It increasingly looks like Lebanon’s prime minister is being held against his will by Saudi Arabia
Two of Lebanon’s major political forces seem to be aligning in blaming Saudi Arabia for the surprise resignation of Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri last weekend.
Both Hezbollah, the Iran-backed militant group, and now, somewhat surprisingly, Hariri’s own Saudi-backed Future Party have alleged that the prime minister is not being allowed to return to Lebanon.
Hariri – a dual Lebanese-Saudi citizen – resigned on Saturday during a trip to Saudi Arabia. Hariri is part of a joint government that includes Hezbollah, and he used his resignation speech to criticize that group and Iran.
Multiple Lebanese sources, as well as two US officials, told Reuters that Saudi Arabia was directly behind Hariri’s resignation. The Lebanese sources also said that Saudi Arabia was now controlling his movements, although to what degree is unclear.
The Lebanese prime minister is politically supported by Saudi Arabia and has not been seen back in his home country since his resignation.
AP Photo/Hassan Ammar Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri arrives for a mass funeral of ten Lebanese soldiers at the Lebanese Defense Ministry, in Yarzeh near