Published: 2017-11-11 14:06
Last Updated: 2017-11-11 14:49
Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah on Friday accused Saudi Arabia of detaining Saad Hariri, who abruptly resigned as Prime Minister while visiting Riyadh last week, citing fears of being assassinated and blaming Iran’s growing influence in the region.
In a televised address, Nasrallah insisted that Saudi Arabia is banning Hariri from returning to Lebanon, thereby deeming his resignation “illegal and invalid,” according to Al Jazeera.
"All of a sudden, out of nowhere, Saudi Arabia called the prime minister on urgent matter without his aide or advisers, and was forced to tender his resignation, and to read the resignation statement written by them," Nasrallah said.
"We declare that the prime minister of Lebanon has not resigned," he said. "Saad Hariri is our political opponent, but he is also our prime minister."
Nasrallah further accused Saudi Arabia of asking Israel to launch an attack on Lebanon.
"The most dangerous thing is inciting Israel to strike Lebanon," he said.
Tensions between the two countries rose on Thursday after Saudi Arabia urged its citizens to leave Lebanon immediately.
The surprising resignation raised concerns that Lebanon could once again descend into violence between rival camps led by Hariri and the Iranian-backed movement Hezbollah.