“Saudi’s reaction… is tantamount to waging war and [komentar Kordahi] does not justify hasty action against Lebanon and its people,” said the spokesman for Lebanon’s Hezbollah parliamentary bloc, Hassan Ezzeddine, as quoted by NBN TV.
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Kordahi has sparked a diplomatic crisis between Lebanon and the Gulf states for his comments about Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates’ involvement in the Yemen war. He said the Iran-backed Houthis were defending themselves against foreign aggression during an interview that aired on August 5, 2021.
Saudi Arabia expelled the Lebanese Ambassador from the country and banned all Lebanese imports. Bahrain and Kuwait followed suit. The UAE did the same by withdrawing its diplomats from Beirut and banning its citizens from traveling to Lebanon.
Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan told Al Arabiya on Sunday that this diplomatic crisis is bigger than Kordahi’s statement, and that the main crisis is Hezbollah’s growing influence in Lebanese politics.
Lebanese Prime Minister Najib Mikati has tried to contain the impact of the diplomatic crisis from the start by dismissing Kordahi’s comments and stressing that they have nothing to do with government policy.
Mikati urged Kordahi again on Thursday (4/11/2021) to prioritize Lebanon’s national interests. “I reiterate my call to the Minister of Information to take the necessary stance and prioritize the national interest,” he said.