Report: Asiri’s Visit Not to Mediate on Presidential Elections, Pakistan Next Destination

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The primary objective for the visit of Saudi Ambassador to Lebanon Ali Awad Asiri to Beirut last week is a farewell to Lebanese officials away from any mediations on the presidential elections and to pave the way for the appointment of his successor, official sources told al-Akhbar daily on Friday.

Last week, Asiri arrived in Lebanon with his family where he stressed that “Saudi Arabia did not and will not meddle in Lebanese affairs,” in reference to the stalled presidential elections.

Lawmakers on Wednesday failed to elect a new president as differences between the March 8 and 14 alliances led to a lack of quorum in the third parliamentary session aimed at choosing a new head of state.

Asiri told several officials that an order was issued transferring him to Pakistan where he will be an ambassador with broad powers to represent King of Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz, the sources told the daily on condition of anonymity.

Sources close to Asiri said his mission in Islamabad will focus on holding mediation between the different forces in Pakistan.

Others said his new post is closely linked to the Syrian crisis specifically in training Syrian fighters in Pakistan and recruiting foreign rebels to be sent later to Syria, al-Akhbar said.

It also added that Asiri’s new mission would be to restore his country’s role in the eighties of the last century when it recruited Salafists around the world and equipped them to fight in Afghanistan against the Soviet army.

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