Lebanon’s Hariri in Paris after Saudi ‘hostage’ rumors

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PARIS: Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri arrived in France on Saturday from Saudi Arabia, where his shock resignation announcement two weeks ago sparked accusations that he was being held there against his will. Hariri is in Paris at the invitation of France’s President Emmanuel Macron, who is attempting to help broker a solution to a political crisis that has raised fears over Lebanon’s fragile democracy. Lebanese President Michel Aoun said he had spoken by telephone to Hariri, who said he would be back in Lebanon for Independence Day celebrations on Wednesday. Hariri and his wife, who flew in overnight from Riyadh and were whisked to their Paris residence under tight security, were due to meet Macron at noon. They arrived without their children, with the younger two—Loulwa and Abdelaziz, born in 2001 and 2005—staying behind in Riyadh “for their school exams,” a source close to Hariri said. Their elder son Houssam, born in 1999, was due to arrive in Paris separately from London.

AFP

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