Lebanese Army Denies Uncovering Any Plot to Assassinate Hariri


The Lebanese economy and pound are not in danger following the resignation of Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri on Saturday, Finance Minister Ali Hassan Khalil told Reuters.

Hours after announcing in Saudi Arabia's capital of Riyadh on Saturday he would step down, the Saudi television station Al-Arabiya reported an assassination attempt on Hariri was thwarted just days before he resigned.

Nasrallah also said "legitimate questions" were being raised in Lebanon over whether Hariri was being detained in Saudi Arabia.

The two-time prime minister, whose father Rafik held the same position for years and was assassinated in 2005, accused Iran and its powerful Lebanese Shiite ally Hezbollah of seeking hegemony in the region.

"The sudden resignation of Mr. Hariri and his statement in another country is not only surprising and regrettable but is also an indication of his playing a game designed by those who want ill for the region, and the victor of this game is not Arabic or Muslim countries but the Zionists", Qassemi said.

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Hezbollah is a minority member of the government, but its military arsenal far outstrips that of Lebanon's own armed forces.

The prime minister of Lebanon said that he fears there's a "plot to target his life", according to local media.

Lebanese President Michel Ayoun will likely take the reins of the government until a new one can be formed.

In response to the announcement, Iran said that al-Hariri "reiterated untrue and unsubstantiated accusations of the Zionists, the Saudis and the Americans against Iran. We believe that Lebanese citizens will easily overcome this matter".