The Elysee witnessed a bilateral French-Saudi meeting, which included the French President Emmanuel Macron’s advisors in charge of the Lebanese file, Dukan and Dorel, the Saudi Minister, Nizar Al-Alula, in charge of the Lebanese file, and Ambassador Walid Al-Bukhari. According to the information, the meeting is aimed at continuing to help the Lebanese people.
The two sides addressed three points, first, providing aid through the trust fund, whose funds will be dedicated to helping the Lebanese people. The mechanism will be set up after an upcoming visit by Pierre Dukan to Beirut to see the needs of the Lebanese people, and what has been accomplished or not, of the necessary reforms before providing aid, the Elysee meeting also discussed the issue of negotiations with donor institutions. The two sides consider the parliamentary elections as an essential station. The French side sensed the Kingdom’s anticipation of the results of the elections, which in light of what they will produce, will take its decision regarding the relationship with Lebanon.
Diplomatic sources confirm that the Kingdom has changed the way it deals with Lebanese entitlements, meaning it will not support any person or group, but it has not abandoned Lebanon and the sovereigns who have the independence line, and according to the information, it will work with France and the international community so that this sovereign line remains in Lebanon and thus support will be for the strong state model. Diplomatic sources say that Saudi reproaches on some of the members of the same house, especially within the Sunni sect, which are divided against each other, which will contribute to weakening the sovereign line in favor of Hezbollah and its allies. Saudi Arabia, along with France and the international community, is seeking to hold parliamentary elections that preserve Lebanon’s shape and Arab identity and respect its essence. The Saudi position so far has not changed, and the Kingdom is convinced that short-term solutions and quick initiatives are no longer feasible, and it considers that Lebanon must deal more seriously with the international community and with Arab countries, meaning that it deals as a state and not as coexisting groups.
Aid to the Lebanese people will not stop. This can also be summarized from the Elysee meeting, even if this aid is limited to the educational, social and hospital humanitarian aspect, provided that this will not be presented to the political authority or through it. Here, there is a distinction between France and Saudi Arabia. At a time when France still provides aid through state institutions and the last of which is the bus donation. Saudi Arabia insists on providing support to the Lebanese citizen and educational and hospital institutions, not to the government.