Lebanon’s Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri and Russian President Vladimir Putin agreed on Thursday on the need for the swift formation of a government.
"Saad Hariri briefed Vladimir Putin on the political situation in Lebanon and efforts to form a new government and overcome the current economic crisis," a Kremlin statement said following a 50-minute phone call between them.
It added that Russia reaffirmed its principled position to support Lebanon’s sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity.
Hariri’s press office said the conversation between the two officials dealt with the situation in Lebanon and the region.
“Talks focused on the government formation crisis in Lebanon, with emphasis on the importance of forming a new cabinet as soon as possible,” it said.
Both sides also discussed cooperation between Lebanon and Russia in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic, and the possibility of Russia supplying Lebanon with vaccines.
Agreement was reached to continue discussions between Russia and Lebanon, the statement said.
Also in Moscow, Hariri held talks with Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin, who welcomed the Lebanese leader and his accompanying delegation, stressing the solid ties between Lebanon and Russia.
Lebanese delegation sources described the meeting as “excellent.”
"When we form a government and make the required reforms, we would like to see all the Russian companies invest in Lebanon," Hariri said.
He encouraged Russians to invest in Lebanon, adding that there are also tourism opportunities when the pandemic ends.
"We hope you encourage Russia's businessmen to come to Lebanon," the PM-designate stated.