Lebanese PM Saad Hariri arrived in Paris early on Saturday after being held for 13 days in Riyadh by Saudi authorities. Hariri is accompanied by his wife, but his son and daughter are still in Saudi capital, in a move that raises many questions.
Hariri arrived in Le Bourget airport at 8:00 a.m. (Beirut time). He drove the car to his house in Paris by himself, local media reported.
Hariri was accompanied by his wife Lara, but his son Abdul Aziz and daughter Lulua are still in Riyadh, according to local media. Meanwhile, Hariri’s eldest son Hussam, who was in London, flew to Paris late on Friday to meet his father.
Interior Minister Nohad Machnouk, who is also a member in Hariri’s parliamentary bloc, along with the PM’s bureau chief Nader Hariri arrived in Paris to meet the Lebanese premier.
As Hariri left Saudi Arabia, a tweet posted on his Twitter account read: “To say that I am held up in Saudi Arabia and not allowed to leave the country is a lie. I am on the way to the airport.”
Hariri’s arrival in France comes as Lebanon, led by President Michel Aoun, launched a diplomatic campaign aimed at revealing reality behind Hariri’s absence since he announced his shock resignation on November 4 from Riyadh.
President Aoun on Wednesday stated it clearly that Hariri is detained in Riyadh.
Earlier this week Lebanese FM, Gebran Bassil made a tour in European countries in which he met with high level European officials. During the tour, Bassil’s move was supported by European officials who condemned interference in Lebanese internal affairs and called for Hariri’s return.
In a move seen as an exit to the crisis, French president Emmanuel Macron on Wednesday invited Hariri and his family to visit France for a “few days”. On Thursday, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said Hariri “has accepted an invitation” to travel to Paris.