Lebanon’s President Michel Aoun has publicly acknowledged that the country’s Prime Minister Saad Hariri is being detained in Saudi Arabia along with his family, describing it “an act of aggression” against Lebanon.
“Nothing justifies Hariri’s lack of return for 12 days. We therefore consider him detained,” President Michel Aoun told reporters on Wednesday, Reuters reported.
This is Lebanon’s strongest position against Riyadh on the situation around the Lebanese prime minister.
Saying the Saudis were also holding Hariri’s family members, Aoun said, “We have not previously asked for their return, but we have confirmed that [his family] is also detained and family members are being searched as they enter and leave the house.”
Earlier this month, Hariri announced his resignation in a televised program broadcast from Saudi Arabia, where he is reportedly under arrest.
Hezbollah secretary general Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah has said that Riyadh had appealed to the Israeli regime to attack Lebanon in the name of fighting Hezbollah, and was ready to spend billions of dollars to achieve that goal.
Iranian President Hassan Rouhani also made similar remarks on Wednesday, describing Saudi Arabia’s intervention in Lebanon a “shameful” act of aggression against an independent nation.
Upon resignation, Hariri strongly criticized Iran and Hezbollah.