Hariri: Circumstances inadequate to meet with Nasrallah

Prime Minister Saad Hariri maintained that Lebanon and Egypt have strong political ties, highlighting the necessity to bolster the bilateral economic relations between the two countries.

He also considered that security of the Arab countries is correlated, refusing that Lebanon be used as a platform to target a brotherly state.

Hariri was interviewed by Egypt’s al-Ahram newspaper, on the sidelines of his official visit to Cairo on top of a ministerial delegation.

“We are seeking to promote the economic ties,” the Prime Minister stressed.

“We, as a government, are ready to discuss the possibility of cooperation between Lebanon and Egypt, or any other region in the world where Lebanese expatriates are massively present.”

Moreover, Hariri underlined that civil peace in Lebanon was a red line.

He did not fail to extoll Egypt’s “crucial” role in clinching security in the Arab world in general, and Lebanon in particular.

In response to a question on Syria, Hariri maintained that the ongoing war could only be stopped with a political settlement.

“We did not see any progress in Geneva negotiations as to ceasing the war in Syria. The war is still on the go because it seems that al-Assad’s regime and its key regional ally, Iran, are wagering on the military solution and are taking advantage of the negotiations to realize their goal,” he said.

Hariri also reminded the major economic hardships in Lebanon caused by the massive influx of displaced Syrians, in addition to terrorist threats.

He added that the Lebanese government was now preparing for a comprehensive plan to face the reverberations of the displacement, revealing that the strategy will be presented during the imminent Brussels meeting.

Answering a question on President Michel Aoun’s support for Hezbollah’s weaponry, Hariri renewed his party’s rejection of illegitimate arms, despite the regular dialogue sessions between the two rivals.

Moreover, Hariri ruled out meeting with Hezbollah’s Secretary General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah.

“I believe the circumstances are inadequate to hold such a meeting,” he said.

Hariri also explained that the “attack by some Lebanese parties” against the Gulf states took a toll on those countries’ relations with Lebanon, as well as on the Saudi military donation.

Accordingly, the Prime Minister reassured that his ties with Saudi Arabia were “out of question,” denying ice in relations.

He even explained that he had not visited Riyadh yet due to the schedule of both the Saudi and Lebanese governments, “and not for any other reason.”

Pertaining to the current quandary over the election law, Hariri maintained that there could possible not be any law unless all parties agreed over it.

“I can say that we haven’t reached an impasse, and we have made some progress. I hope that we manage to crystallize a vision of a law that satisfies all sides in the coming days,” he said.

“There will only be a technical extension of the Parliament’s mandate to bring the new law into effect,” he added.

Lastly, Hariri stressed that his father’s assassination case had not gone cold.

“The Special Tribunal for Lebanon will continue its work, and everybody knows the accuracy of international courts,” he concluded.

Source: National News Agency