Fathali Expresses Tehran's Readiness to Aid Army, Says Presidential Poll 'Local Affair'إقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
Newly-appointed Iranian Ambassador to Lebanon Mohammed Fathali reiterated on Tuesday that his country is ready to provide Lebanese security agencies with all the necessary aid, stressing that the Lebanese presidential poll is a local affair.
“We have announced since day one that we are ready to cooperate with the Lebanese army and all security agencies on high levels,” Fathali said in an interview with As Safir newspaper.
He noted that his country “doesn't place conditions for the cooperation unlike other states that offered the Lebanese army weapons setting a precondition that they wouldn't be used against” Israel.
In January, Saudi Arabia has decided to donate three billion dollars with the aim of purchasing French weapons for the Lebanese army.
The diplomat pointed out that Lebanon is an important country for Iran, considering that the recent security backlash was imposed by the developments in the regions that “entered a critical stage.”
Asked if a regional agreement between Tehran and Saudi Arabia would facilitate the Lebanese presidential elections, Fathali described the polls as “a local affair.”
He expressed belief that “no foreign sides should intervene in the process.”
The Lebanese parliament has failed in several rounds to elect a successor to President Michel Suleiman, whose six-year term expired on May 25 after the March 8 and 14 alliances failed to agree on a compromise candidate.
On Hizbullah's stance regarding the elections, the Iranian official said that the party “is a Lebanese organization that abides by the resistance, it is also a political party... And it's normal for all political movements to have an opinion on any political matter.”
The majority of the March 8 camp's MPs, including Hizbullah's Loyal to the Resistance bloc, have boycotted the parliamentary sessions, leading to a lack of the needed two-thirds quorum.
“Hizbullah is practicing fair and just policies,” Fathali said.
He expressed his staunch support for Hizbullah, a long-standing ally of both Iran and Syria.
Image Credit: As Safir Newspaper