Report: Lebanese PM Hariri not being held prisoner in Saudi Arabia

According to a report by the Associated Press on Friday, a French official in President Emmanuel Macron’s office announced that Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri told the US and French ambassadors he is not being held prisoner in Saudi Arabia. Meanwhile, a Lebanese official said Lebanon has formally demanded Hariri’s return to the country.
Saad Hariri Photo Credit: Reuters/Channel 2 News

A French official who spoke to resigned Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri said the latter insisted he is not being held prisoner in Saudi Arabia, according to a report by the Associated Press on Friday. The statement comes amid reports that Hariri, who has remained in Saudi Arabia since his surprise resignation, is being held against his will in Riyadh.

According to the report, the official explained that the French and US ambassadors met with Hariri as well as the Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman in Riyadh, and both claimed the prime minister is not being held against his will. Meanwhile, French President Emmanuel Macron paid an unexpected visit to Saudi Arabia on Thursday, where he met with the Crown Prince and discussed the regional tensions following Hariri’s resignation.

A senior Lebanese official told the AP that Beirut officially informed Saudi Arabia that the way Hariri announced his resignation was “unacceptable” and demanded his return to Lebanon. Lebanese President Michel Aoun relayed the request during a meeting with the Saudi ambassador in Lebanon on Friday.



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