Italian Premier Paolo Gentiloni, left, and Lebanese President Michel Aoun review the honor guard on the occasion of their meeting, at Chigi Palace, in Rome, Friday, Dec. 1, 2017. (Claudio Peri/ANSA via AP)
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The Saudi foreign minister said Hezbollah must disarm for Lebanon to survive and prosper, shortly before Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil and Prime Minister Saad Hariri were set to meet in Paris.Separately, Hariri and Bassil were set to meet in Paris to put the final touches on a new agreement that would see the Lebanese premier formally withdraw his resignation.Local Lebanese media reported that Bassil and Hariri would meet with French President Emmanuel Macron to brief him on the final deal.The agreement calls on all Lebanese parties, particularly Hezbollah, to comply with the policy of dissociation, commit to the 1989 Taif Accord and abide by the policy of noninterference in the internal affairs of other Arab countries.For his part, Hezbollah's deputy chief Sheikh Naim Qassem praised Aoun for not falling for "conspiracy theories". He lauded Aoun's for saying Hezbollah was a resistance to Israeli terrorism. Touching on the agreement being hashed out between Lebanese officials and political parties, Geagea welcomed the talks "which renew the government consensus towards the 'true' policy of dissociation ... by pulling out of all regional crises". He added that information from those close to Aoun and Hariri indicated that Hezbollah was serious about adopting the policy of dissociation.
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