A large fight broke out at the Lebanese Foreign Ministry on Monday involving outgoing Foreign Minister Zeina Akar and the ministry’s secretary-general Hani Chemaitelly.
Photos of a damaged office inside the Foreign Ministry were widely shared on social media in Lebanon throughout the day.
Initial information indicated that the fight started between Akar’s security detail and employees who work under Chemaitelly after the latter refused to hand Akar her mail because she was no longer a minister.
According to that story, reported by local media, Akar wanted to receive her daily mail, considering that she had not yet handed her position over to her successor, but Chemaytelli considered her a former minister and refused to oblige, causing the fight to start.
However, Akar’s media office later denied this claim, affirming to Annahar that this story was completely false.
Akar had arrived at her office in the ministry to find that the doors had been shut, “as if someone was trying to prevent her from entering, while her visit was only a farewell and to salute and thank the employees and workers at the ministries,” her media office said.
Chemaytelli has not commented on the incident, as of the time of writing.
On Friday, Abdallah Bou Habib was announced as Lebanon’s new Foreign Minister after the new government, headed by Prime Minister Najib Mikati, was formed to end a 13-month-long political crisis.
Akar is set to hand the position over to Bou Habib on Tuesday.