Lebanon president calls on Riyadh to clarify reasons stopping Hariri return

Tillerson warns against `proxy conflicts´ in Lebanon

Tillerson warns against `proxy conflicts´ in Lebanon

Lebanon's president said on Saturday anything Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri has said or may say "does not reflect reality" due to the mystery of his situation since he quit in a broadcast from Saudi Arabia last week.

For the past year, Mr Hariri has headed a coalition government that included members of the Iranian-backed Hezbollah militia.

Saudi Arabia appears to want to see Lebanon headed by someone would form a government without Hezbollah, perhaps believing Mr Hariri has become too lenient toward the group.

Bahram Qasemi said in comments carried by state news agency IRNA that the kingdom is trying to destabilize the region.

Iran and Saudi Arabia are fighting proxy wars in the region from Syria to Yemen.

Qasemi said Riyadh is "after creating unrest in Lebanon".

In a statement released by his office, Aoun called on Saudi Arabia "that is linked to us through deep brotherly and friendly relations to clarify the reasons that are preventing" Hariri from returning to Lebanon.

But it is not being accepted unless he delivers it on Lebanese soil.

Saudi Arabia blames Tehran for backing militant groups throughout the Middle East and has recently vowed to fight them on top of them Lebanon's Hezbollah group. Iran is a predominantly Shia military and economic power while Saudi Arabia is a Sunni bloc leader.

The UN too is calling for stability in Lebanon.

In the first concrete action against Lebanon after days of threats by Saudi government officials, Saudi Arabia and other Gulf countries ordered their citizens to leave the country amid the soaring tensions.

Lebanon's state-run National News Agency reported on Saturday that French President Emmanuel Macron called his Lebanese counterpart to express France's commitment to Lebanon's "unity, sovereignty and independence".

White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a statement Saturday that Washington calls upon "all states and parties to respect Lebanon's sovereignty, independence, and constitutional processes".

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