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Riyadh: International Consultations to Contain 'Hezbollah'

Riyadh: International Consultations to Contain 'Hezbollah'

Friday, 17 November, 2017 - 06:30
French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian addresses a joint press conference with his Adel Al-Jubeir (right) in Riyadh, Thursday. — AFP

Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Adel bin Ahmad al-Jubeir, uncovered on Thursday ongoing international consultations to contain the role of “Hezbollah” in Lebanon, and stressed the need to disarm the party for the stability of Lebanon.

In a joint press conference with his French counterpart Jean-Yves Le Drian in Riyadh on Thursday, Jubeir said: "Consultations and coordination between peace-loving countries and Lebanon-loving countries are underway to try to find a way that would restore sovereignty to Lebanon and reduce the negative action which Hezbollah is conducting in Lebanon".

The Saudi Foreign Minister also said that Hezbollah is a terrorist organization of the highest order and must be disarmed.

"Hezbollah is a tool at the hands of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards," Jubeir said, adding that if Lebanon is able to refute the role of Hezbollah, it will be fine, but if this approach continues, instability will continue and the situation in Lebanon will be dangerous.

For his part, Le Drian said he discussed with his Saudi counterpart the behavior of Iran, raising concern over Tehran’s role in the region.

The French minister also echoed Riyadh's concerns over Iranian "intervention in regional crises" and "hegemonic" intentions.

“I'm thinking specifically about Iran's ballistic program," Le Drian said.

Commenting on accusations raised by President Michel Aoun claiming that Prime Minister Saad Hariri was being held in the Kingdom, Jubeir said those allegations were false and baseless.

“Hariri lives in the Kingdom by his own will and he resigned; regarding his return to Lebanon, it is up to him and his assessment to the security situation (in Lebanon).”

The Saudi minister also said that Hariri is a Saudi citizen as well as a Lebanese citizen.

“He visits the Kingdom and lives in the Kingdom on his own choice. He can leave the Kingdom when he wants," he added.

On Thursday, the French presidential palace announced that Hariri will be in Paris on Saturday and that he will be received by French President Emmanuel Macron at the Elysee.

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