| 20 May 2024, Monday |

Would Kordahi resignation put things back on track with Gulf countries?

Despite Prime Minister Najib Mikati’s efforts to return Lebanon to the Arab spirit, there is no news on the horizon since he lacks a “solution and connectivity” within Lebanon. Also, his efforts invested on the international level won’t result in the decision to fire Kordahi because “they are fed up” with the continuous targeting and unfulfilled promises from the Lebanese officials who keep interfering in Gulf states’ domestic affairs.

In this context, Sawt Beirut International interviewed the political analyst Nidal El Sabeh about the developments regarding Kordahi ’s resignation and the possibility of restoring relations with the Kingdom and the Gulf states. El Sabeh revealed that 10 days ago, Minister George Kordahi was about to announce his resignation right after a session that was held. However, at that time, it seemed that a decision issued by the Judicial Investigator in Beirut Port Blast Tarek Bitar, disrupted the process. Some Western diplomats are attempting to incriminate the latter in the port blast, which bothers him, and he is therefore firm on the question of his removal in the session that the prime minister will hold.

The political analyst further explained that Mikati seems to have become besieged under the support of France, the United States and the international community to keep Judge Bitar in office and to separate the judicial authority from the political. Mikati made it to the Vatican, in which he tried to make efforts with Pope Francis to address the crisis with the Gulf. He also contacted French President Emmanuel Macron, who will visit the Gulf to conclude a major deal for Rafale jets for the interest of the UAE. Then, Macron will head to Qatar, the country that President Aoun had recently visited, and most probably, the Lebanese file will be brought to the negotiations’ table, before concluding his visit in Saudi Arabia. Nevertheless, sources confirm that the French side asked PM Mikati to resolve and put an end to Kordahi issue before he reaches Gulf countries, in order to be able to tackle the file. It is noteworthy that the French Ambassador in Lebanon has met with former Minister Sleiman Frangieh, which falls within the framework of Kordahi’s submission of his resignation.

When asked whether Kordahi resignation would restore the relationship between the Kingdom and Lebanon to normal, El Sabeh believes that it might open horizons for entering into a transparent dialogue with the Gulf states and Saudi Arabia in particular to address the Kingdom’s concerns, and of course it should lead to a Lebanese pledge not to interfere in Gulf affairs, especially with regard to Yemen.

On the other hand, El Sabeh explained that PM Mikati has become trapped between continuing with this government, running the elections, or supporting Judge Bitar. However, on the other hand, Mikati needs “Hezbollah” and cannot engage in a confrontation with the party in these matters, although according to my information, he leaked messages to the “Shiite duo” that he can no longer tolerate the situation, and was about to resign.

  • Sawt Beirut International