BEIRUT — Prime Minister Najib Mikati said Saturday that his call earlier in the day with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman and French President Emmanuel Macron was an “important step” toward Lebanon reviving its relationship with Riyadh.
Here is what we know:
• “The call I had with President Macron and Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman is an important step towards resuming historic fraternal relations with Saudi Arabia,” the PM tweeted in French on his personal account.
• He added that he wanted to thank Macron and the de-facto Saudi ruler for “their testimony of friendship for Lebanon” and claimed his cabinet, which has not convened since Oct. 12, was committed to “meeting its reform commitments.”
• Mikati’s tweets come on the heels of Macron’s tweets earlier in the day, in which the French president announced he and the Saudi crown prince called Mikati and affirmed their commitment to helping Lebanon overcome its compounding crises.
• In a statement issued by the state-run Saudi Press Agency, Riyadh announced that Mikati voiced “Lebanon’s appreciation for the significant efforts made by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and France to stand by the Lebanese people.
• Saudi Arabia added that Mikati said in the conversation that the Lebanese government was committed to taking all measures “that would strengthen relations” with Riyadh and Gulf states while “rejecting anything that would harm” Saudi Arabia’s security and stability.
• Following his meeting in Jeddah with bin Salman, Macron told reporters that he would call President Michel Aoun on Sunday, AFP reported.
• Macron’s visit to Saudi Arabia came a day after Information Minister George Kurdahi resigned from the cabinet. Kurdahi said that he believed his resignation came at the behest of Macron, who on Saturday said he supports Lebanon’s sovereignty.
• In late October, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain and the UAE cut diplomatic ties with Lebanon after an interview aired of Kurdahi criticizing Saudi Arabia’s war efforts in Yemen. Saudi Arabia also banned Lebanese imports, with Saudi officials saying their problems with Lebanon extended beyond Kurdahi’s comments to include Hezbollah’s influential role within Lebanon.
BEIRUT — Prime Minister Najib Mikati said Saturday that his call earlier in the day with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman and French President Emmanuel Macron was an “important step” toward Lebanon reviving its relationship with Riyadh.Here is what we know: • “The call I had with President Macron and Crown Prince Mohamed bin Salman is an important step towards...