The Lebanese Foreign Ministry’s statement condemning the Russian invasion of Ukraine sparked a controversy on the local scene, as Lebanon gets divided between supporters and opponents.
Ain al-Tineh, through its sources, announced its repudiate . As for Hezbollah, member of the “Loyalty to the Resistance” bloc, Representative Ibrahim al-Moussawi said: “They distance themselves and claim neutrality wherever they want, and they interfere and condemn wherever they want, what a strange matter.” He asked, “Which foreign policy does Lebanon follow, and what is Lebanon’s interest in that? Please, our Minister of Foreign Affairs, Abdallah Bouhabib, explain the matter to us.”
In this context, Foreign Minister Abdullah Bu Habib said: “I am wearing a shield, and Iam the only one to get shot at regarding the statement.”
On the other hand, European capitals welcomed its contents. In this context, ambassadors of France and Germany to Lebanon visited Bouhabib to thank Lebanon for the statement on the Ukrainian-Russian crisis, and wished Lebanon to continue in this stance. They also requested Lebanon’s participation in adopting the resolution submitted to the Security Council on the crisis and voting on it in the General Assembly later.
Bouhabib informed the two ambassadors that “Lebanon’s stance is consistent and stems from its keenness to adhere to the principles of international legitimacy and international law, which constitute the basic guarantee for the protection of international peace and order and the territorial integrity of small countries, especially since Lebanon has suffered greatly from the Israeli occupation and its continuous violations till now.” He also informed them, “Lebanon abstained from participating in the adoption of the resolution submitted to the Security Council and that the Lebanese position regarding voting will be studied in the event that the resolution is referred to the General Assembly, in consultation with the Arab Group.
Moreover, Bouhabib clarified that “the Lebanese stance is not directed against the Russian Federation or any other friendly country, but rather a principled and firm position that Lebanon has taken and will take in every similar crisis,” noting that he met yesterday with the Ambassador of the Russian Federation to Lebanon and expressed his regret that Lebanon is about to Issuing a statement condemning the Russian military operation, and that “this position is not directed against his country, and we do not want it to affect the close bilateral relationship.”
It should be noted that the meetings held by the Minister with the ambassadors of Ukraine, Poland, Romania, France and Germany came in the context of discussing the topic of discussing the possibility of evacuating the Lebanese from Ukraine, according to the security situation’s development