Aoun Says Keenness on Lebanon-Gulf Ties Must be 'Mutual'


President Michel Aoun on Tuesday stressed his adherence to “Lebanon’s official stance” as to “keenness on Lebanon’s Arab and international ties, especially with the Arab Gulf nations, topped by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”

“This keenness must be mutual, because it is in the interest of both Lebanon and the Gulf countries,” Aoun added.

His remarks come hours after Hizbullah chief Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah verbally attacked Saudi King Salman and said Riyadh helped spread extremist ideology worldwide and is “taking hostage” the thousands of Lebanese who work in the Gulf region.

The comments come as Lebanese authorities are trying to mend relations with Saudi Arabia that hit a new low in October when the kingdom recalled its ambassador from Beirut and banned all Lebanese imports. The Saudi move followed comments by a Lebanese Cabinet minister who said in a televised interview that the war in Yemen was futile and called it an aggression by the Saudi-led coalition.

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