Hariri Holds Talks in Qatari Capital

Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri speaks during a regional banking conference, in Beirut, Lebanon, Thursday, Nov. 23, 2017. Hariri told the conference that the country's stability is his primary concern. The remarks, a day after Hariri suspended his resignation, sought to assure the Hariri's government would keep up the effort to have Lebanon remain a top Mideast destination for finance. (AP Photo/Hussein Malla)

Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri arrived Wednesday evening in the Qatari capital Doha, his press office said.

“He immediately met with Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Mohammed bin Abdulrahman bin Jassem Al-Thani and held talks with him over a dinner banquet thrown in his honor,” the office said in a statement.

The talks tackled “the various general situations in Lebanon and the region and the bilateral relations between the two countries,” the office added.

Hariri will also meet with Emir of Qatar Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani according to media reports.

Hariri’s trip to Qatar comes days after the Qatar foreign minister visited Lebanon and met with top officials.

Arab diplomatic sources told al-Joumhouria daily in remarks published Wednesday that Hariri’s trip to Qatar has special significance because it also comes after the Qatari foreign minister’s trip last week to Iran where he met Iranian counterpart Mohammad Javad Zarif.

The Qatari official discussed the Lebanese situation with Iranian officials, the sources said.

During his visit to Lebanon, the Qatari minister called on all Lebanese parties to prioritize the national interest and to expedite the formation of the government, stressing that Doha will support any way that leads to that.

Hariri had on Sunday announced that his meetings abroad are aimed at rallying support for crisis-hit Lebanon.

“I’m visiting Arab states and countries in the region and the world to rally support for Lebanon and mend ties, especially Arab relations, so that the solution can begin quickly once the government is formed, and it will be formed,” he said.



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