Channels

Iran's Rouhani: Saudi meddling in Lebanon is 'unprecedented'

BEIRUT – Iran's President Hassan Rouhani criticized Saudi Arabia on Wednesday over what he called "unprecedented" interference in Lebanese affairs and added his voice to those who suspect the Gulf kingdom forced Lebanon's prime minister to resign.

 

Rouhani's remarks followed a phone call to his Lebanese counterpart the previous day, in which the Iranian president pledged Tehran's

support for Lebanon's stability following the resignation of the Saudi-backed Prime Minister Saad Hariri.

 

The surprise resignation, announced on TV from Saudi Arabia, threw the Lebanese government into disarray and exposed a new front for the tensions between the Sunni powerhouse and its archrival Shiite-led Iran. Lebanon's president, Michel Aoun, told Lebanese politicians that Hariri's resignation will not be accepted until he hears from him directly.

 

According to Rouhani's official website, the Iranian president said that "there is no case in history that a country forces another one's authority to resign only to interfere (in) their internal affairs."