Lebanon News

Machnouk has ‘impression’ that Hariri to return within days

Interior Minister Nouhad Machnouk meets with Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdul-Latif Derian at Dar al-Fatwa on Nov. 6, 2017. (The Daily Star/ Dalati Nohra)

BEIRUT: Interior Minister Nouhad Machnouk said Monday that he had the impression that Prime Minister Saad Hariri will be back in Beirut within the coming days.

Speaking after a meeting with Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdul-Latif Derian at Dar al-Fatwa, Machnouk said that there was still no confirmation regarding Hariri’s return to the country after the premier announced his resignation from Saudi Arabia Saturday, but rather “an impression.”

He added that Hariri's meeting with Saudi King Salman in Riyadh Monday also indicated that the premier might come back soon.

As for the reported attempts to assassinate Hariri, Machnouk said that Lebanese security agencies were not aware of any such threats. “But it seems that a trusted western apparatus directly transported this news to Hariri.”

During his resignation speech, Hariri said he feared for his life and that he sensed schemes against him were being sowed.

Machnouk also praised President Michel Aoun’s approach to the recent developments.

In the wake of the shock resignation, Aoun has reportedly decided not to make any decisions going forward until Hariri returns. The president also said that the political, economic and security situation in Lebanon was "a red line" during the first of two high-level stability meetings Monday morning.

 

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