Hariri to visit Egypt, expected return to Lebanon on Wednesday

Lebanese President Michel Aoun has not recognized the resignation of Hariri, echoing Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah's concerns that the statement could have been made under pressure by the Saudi authorities.

The paper added that intensive meetings were held on Monday night in Cyprus between Egyptian and French officials joining President Abdol Fattah Al-Sisi in Nicosia, where an Egyptian-Cypriot-Greek was scheduled to be held.

Saad Hariri had unexpectedly resigned as Prime Minister from Saudi Arabia resulting in a political crisis in the region.

Iran's President Hassan Rouhani has criticised the Arab League for supporting Saudi Arabia and its role in the war in Yemen.

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Hariri's abrupt resignation and continued stay in Saudi Arabia has caused fears for Lebanon's stability.

Saad al-Hariri, who resigned as Lebanese prime minister on November 4, left Cairo for Lebanon on Tuesday after a brief meeting with Egypt's President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, Egyptian airport sources said on Tuesday.

A dual Saudi-Lebanese national with vast business interests in the kingdom, Hariri told reporters after talks with the Egyptian leader: "Inshallah (God willing), tomorrow's Independence Day in Lebanon will be a feast for all Lebanese".

In Lebanon, the army chief called on troops to stand firm against any attempt to incite strife in the country amid the crisis triggered by Hariri's resignation.

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Lebanon maintains a delicate sectarian balance after Sunnis, Shi'ites, Christians and Druze fought a civil war between 1975 and 1990, with factions often backed by regional rivals. Aoun, a Christian, is a political ally of Hezbollah.

The Saudi-owned, pan-Arab daily Asharq Al-Awsat alluded to French and Egyptian efforts in a front-page report on Tuesday. Hariri's government, a power-sharing coalition formed previous year, includes Hezbollah.

On Saturday, U.S. President Donald Trump spoke with Macron about the situation in Lebanon and Syria. He plans to discuss threats against Israel from Iran and its Lebanese proxy terror group, Hezbollah. That was met by a rebuke in Tehran.

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