Hezbollah urges Saudi Arabia to stop meddling in Lebanon's affairs
The deputy chief of Lebanese resistance movement Hezbollah has urged Saudi Arabia to stop meddling in Lebanon’s internal affairs amid a rift between Beirut and Riyadh over comments on the Yemen war.
“Lebanon is an independent country that does not accept subordination to anyone,” al-Manar television network cited Hezbollah Deputy Secretary General Sheikh Naim Qassem as saying at a graduation ceremony on Wednesday.
Referring to the current dispute with Saudi Arabia, the senior Hezbollah official stressed that it was Riyadh that started the problem with Beirut.
“We don’t have any demand from it (Saudi Arabia) but to stop interfering in our (Lebanon’s) internal affairs,” he stressed.
Sheikh Qassem on Sunday had said the real target of the Saudi diplomatic aggression on Lebanon “has been always Hezbollah as well as its military power."
Tensions rose between Riyadh and Beirut following critical comments made by Lebanese Information Minister George Kordahi regarding the Saudi-led war against Yemen.
On October 29, Saudi Arabia gave the Lebanese ambassador 48 hours to leave the country over Kordahi’s remarks. The kingdom also imposed a ban on all imports from Lebanon.
The measures were taken days after an interview with Kordahi was aired by an online show affiliated with Qatar's al-Jazeera television network.
During the interview, Kordahi called the Saudi-led Yemen war futile, and said that Yemeni army forces and their allied fighters from Popular Committees are defending themselves.
The interview was recorded before Kordahi was appointed as minister, but it aired on October 25.
Saudi Arabia and some of its regional allies, backed by the US and other Western powers, have been waging a devastating war on Yemen since March 2015 to reinstall Yemen’s former president Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, a staunch ally of Riyadh.
The Saudi war, which Riyadh had claimed would last only a few weeks, but is still ongoing, has failed to achieve its goals. It has pushed Yemen to the brink of famine, killed tens of thousands of innocent people, and destroyed the impoverished state’s infrastructure.