UAE Summons Lebanese Ambassador To Condemn Wehbe’s “Racist” Statements

NNA | The Washington Institute

The United Arab Emirates followed the lead of Saudi Arabia and summoned its Lebanese ambassador to hand over an official letter denouncing recent remarks made by Lebanon’s Foreign Minister Charbel Wehbe.

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation has strongly decried the derogatory and racist statements made by caretaker Lebanese Foreign Minister, Charbel Wehbe, against the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the other GCC States,” UAE’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation announced.

The Lebanese community in the UAE issued an apology to the UAE leadership, in the form of a letter of appreciation, rejecting their Foreign Ministry’s offenses towards their hosting country and the GCC states.

Earlier, the Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs had summoned the Lebanese ambassador to hand over an official letter of condemnation over Wehbe’s controversial interview and offensive comments about Arabs and countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC).

The Lebanese community in Saudi Arabia has also stepped up to condemn Wehbe‘s statements, issuing a letter of thanks and apology to the Kingdom’s leadership.

Wehbe’s comments have triggered a diplomatic crisis with the Arab Gulf states as Lebanon’s ambassadors to these countries are being summoned to receive official condemnations, including in Bahrain and Kuwait, as of the time of writing.

According to MTV Lebanon, Saudi Arabia has demanded that Wehbe visits the Saudi Ambassador to Lebanon, Waleed Bukhari, and submits an official written apology towards the GCC countries, “otherwise it will lead to escalating positions that may reach decisions by the Arab League.”

A local newspaper also reported that Saudi Arabia might even withdraw its ambassador from Lebanon if it decides to make an “extraordinary response”.

Until now, the major action taken by KSA was to summon the Lebanese Ambassador “to express the Kingdom’s rejection and condemnation of the abuses issued by the Lebanese Minister of Foreign Affairs,” Bukhari tweeted.

According to local media, there will be demonstrations on Wednesday in Lebanon to show support to Saudi Arabia.

Notably, relations with the Arab Gulf had already been challenged in the light of recent massive busts of narcotics coming from Lebanon.

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