The government of Lebanon, according to Foreign Minister Abdullah Bou Habib, “is unable to limit Hezbollah’s position, adding that “this is a regional matter.” “Dialogue with Riyadh is the best way to move ahead in resolving problems,” he stated.
According to Bou Habib, “We are facing a major crisis as a result of George Qardahi’s instigation. He was like the crisis’s fuse.”
Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan said on Saturday that the present problem in Lebanon stems from “the Lebanese political structure that reinforces the hegemony of the military group Hezbollah, which is sponsored by Iran, and generates continuing instability.”
According to Reuters, Prince Faisal bin Farhan said: “The problem, in my opinion, is considerably larger than the current scenario. I believe it is critical for Lebanon’s government, or any Lebanese institution, to chart a course ahead, freeing Lebanon from the existing political system that perpetuates Hezbollah’s control “.
“We need excellent relations”
“We prefer conversation,” the Lebanese Foreign Minister said in an interview with “Reuters,” stressing his country’s commitment to “good, even exceptional ties with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”
“The only way ahead to address the conflict is by mutual discussion between Lebanon and Saudi Arabia,” Bou Habib said, adding that “there have been no talks at any level between the two sides since Prime Minister Najib Mikati’s administration was formed more than a month ago.”
“There is a quarter of a million Lebanese or more who reside in Saudi Arabia, and their families also live there,” Bou Habib added, “and we respect and love that very much.”
“The government’s apology is out of the question,” the Lebanese minister said, “since the government did not commit a mistake, and what Minister Qardahi described happened before the formation of the government”
“It is not obvious if his resignation would end the conflict with Saudi Arabia at this moment,” Bou Habib said of Qardahi’s unwillingness to retire. “However, it may be sufficient for others in the Gulf.”
Following Qardahi’s remarks, Saudi Arabia said on Friday that it will withdraw its ambassador to Lebanon for consultations and leave the Lebanese envoy in the Kingdom within 48 hours, as well as halting all Lebanese imports. Kuwait and Bahrain also removed top ambassadors from their capitals, while the UAE withdrew all of its diplomats from Beirut.