1036 GMT April 22, 2019
Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qassemi rejected remarks by Saad Hariri, who stepped down as Lebanon’s prime minister on Saturday, saying his resignation and rehashing of the “unfounded and baseless” allegations regularly leveled by the Zionists, Saudis and the US is another scenario to create new tension in Lebanon and the region.
Qassemi made the remarks a few hours after the announcement of Hariri’s resignation in Saudi Arabia, in which he made allegations against Iran and Lebanon's Hezbollah movement, Press TV reported.
He noted that the sudden resignation of Hariri and its announcement in another country is a matter of regret and comes as a surprise.
Qassemi said Iran has always called for the maintenance of peace and stability in the regional countries and has defined its interests in the security, stability and economic prosperity of all the neighboring countries and the region.
Hariri resigned from his post on Saturday during a trip to Saudi Arabia, in a surprise move that plunged the country into uncertainty amid heightened regional tensions.
In a televised address from Riyadh, Hariri suggested he feared for his life and said the atmosphere in the country is similar to that which existed before his father, the late prime minister Rafik Hariri, was assassinated in 2005, AP reported.
Hariri claimed Hezbollah’s policies have put Lebanon “in the eye of the storm.”
He also claimed that Iran planted "disorder and destruction" in the country and meddled in the internal issues of Lebanon as well as other Arab countries.
Hariri was appointed prime minister in late 2016 and headed a 30-member national unity cabinet that included Hezbollah. The government has largely succeeded in protecting the country from the effects of the war in neighboring Syria.