Lebanese prime minister Hariri resigns

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gestures while giving a lecture regarding Israel's foreign policy priorities at Chatham House The Royal Institute of International Affairs in Lond

Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri was reportedly informed of a plot to assassinate him by Western intelligence agencies, leading him to flee the country and resign from his post.

There is "no danger to the economy or pound", Khalil said.

Hariri's resignation was expected to sharply raise tensions in a country where politics have often been overshadowed by those in its much larger neighbor, Syria.

Hariri accused Hezbollah of using its weapons to impose a "fait accompli" in Lebanon.

"Do not listen to alarmist speeches", Nasrallah said.

"The resignation was a Saudi decision dictated to Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri and was forced on him", Nasrallah said in a televised address.


Hariri became prime minister in late 2016 in a coalition government that included the Shiite militant group Hezbollah, one of Saudi Arabia's chief detractors in the region.

Riyadh considers Hezbollah, a close ally of Saudi regional rival Iran, to be a "terrorist" organisation.

The government was formed late last year in a political deal that ended years of deadlock, and last month it produced Lebanon's first budget since 2005.

"Hariri hoped that he could convince Iran on the part of Saudi Arabian officials to stop its opposition to the inhumane policies of Riyadh towards Yemen including conducting airstrikes against the innocent women and children and imposing siege on the impoverished nation which is suffering from lack of food and medicines". Hariri is Lebanon's most influential Sunni politician.

In this February 14, 2005, file photo, vehicles burn following a massive bomb attack that tore through the motorcade of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri in Beirut, Lebanon.

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres was concerned by Hariri's resignation and hoped all sides in the country would back its state institutions, his spokesman on Lebanon Stephane Dujarric said in an emailed statement.

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