Saudi Arabia Announced Severe Measures After Political Unrest With Lebanon

Royal News | AP

Saudi Arabia announced it will take a few severe measures with Lebanon, following political unrest between both countries.

KSA summoned its ambassador in Lebanon and gave the Lebanese ambassador in Saudi Arabia 48 hours to leave the country.

Imports from Lebanon to the KSA will be halted, and Saudi nationals will be prevented from visiting Lebanon due to the unstable security situation.

The announcement made by the Saudi Ministry of Foreign affairs started off with mentioning the previous statements of the Lebanese Information Minister, George Kordahi, regarding the Yemen war.

Kordahi had said in an interview with Al-Jazeera, prior to his designation as a minister, that the war in Yemen was futile, and that Houthis were defending themselves.

Lebanon’s Head of Cabinet Najib Mikati said that Kordahi‘s statements reflected personal opinions and not Lebanon’s.

Kordahi tweeted as well regarding his statements, saying that he did not mean to insult Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

The Lebanese Information minister’s stance sparked outrage in the Arab Gulf countries, including Kuwait, Bahrain, and Saudi Arabia, which summoned Lebanese ambassadors and handed them an official condemnation as a result.

The statement by Saudi’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs also said that Lebanon did not prosecute those responsible for drug smuggling operations into the Saudi Kingdom and did not turn them in, which violates the Riyadh Judiciary Cooperation agreement.

Hezbollah was also part of the statement, where Saudi Arabia said that the party has control over all outlets in Lebanon, and provided support and training for Houthis in Yemen.

KSA‘s government assured that it will care for the Lebanese people living in the kingdom, whom they consider an important part and have nothing to do with the Lebanese minister’s statements.

According to the United Nations COMTRADE database, Lebanon’s 2020 exports to Saudi Arabia reached $219.06 million. The 3rd highest after UAE and Switzerland.

Sources have also mentioned that some Gulf Cooperation Council countries will take similar measures, with some of them even going for pulling their ambassadors from Lebanon.

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