Dr. Nassif Hitti, Former Representative of the League of the Arab States and Lebanon’s newest Minister of Foreign Affairs, has said that he would deploy all efforts to garner Arab and international support for Lebanon amid its financial crisis.
Born in Tripoli, Dr. Hitti completed his BA and MA in Political Science at the American University of Beirut and his Doctorate in International Relations at the University of South California.
He is the author of ‘The Theory of International Relations’ and ‘The Arab World and the Five Superpowers: Futuristic Study.”
Dr. Hitti has also served as a Visiting Professor at the Mediterranean Academy of Diplomatic Studies in Malta and is a frequent lecturer at multiple universities and research centers.
During his handover ceremony with former Minister Gebran Bassil, as reported by Asharq Al-Awsat online newspaper, Hitti said: “Small countries always need an active foreign policy and to have a strong presence in regional and international forums, as this active presence impacts safety and security at the regional and international levels.”
He added: “In the face of risks and challenges that we live in today, we must make an active move to strengthen ties with major powers, brotherly Arab states and friendly countries, as well as with relevant international and regional organizations in order to guarantee all aspects of support for Lebanon.”
In his handover statement, Bassil expressed his tendency to choose national interest above anything else in his foreign policy directives.
He stated, “I chose national unity as the compass to guide my positions on foreign policy. I wanted the foreign policy to be independent, to work in Lebanon’s best interest, and be based on international law.” (How can foreign policy be “independent” though? But ok.)
Bassil concluded with a statement expressing his regret that, although he accomplished so many of his objectives during his term, he was unable to “achieve some things in the ministry.”