Prime Minister Saad Hariri meets a Delegation from Bekaa Families. (Dalati Nohra)
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A high-ranking Saudi envoy is due in Beirut Monday for talks with the country's top leaders centering on improving Lebanese-Saudi relations, strained since Prime Minister Saad Hariri's resignation, now rescinded, last November, official sources said Sunday. Soon after his arrival at Beirut airport, the envoy, Nizar al-Aloula, heading a Saudi delegation, is set to meet President Michel Aoun at 3 p.m. Monday at Baabda Palace for talks on Lebanese-Saudi ties and developments in the region, an official source told The Daily Star. Aloula's visit comes as Lebanon is gearing up to hold parliamentary elections, Lebanon's first since 2009, on May 6, the results of which will determine the country's political path for the next four years.Aloula is the first senior Saudi official to visit Lebanon since Hariri's shock resignation, announced from Riyadh on Nov. 4, put Lebanese-Saudi relations under strain after Aoun accused the kingdom of detaining the prime minister against his will. Hariri returned to Beirut on Nov. 21 following French mediation efforts with Saudi authorities.
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