Politics, Middle East

Lebanon foreign minister resigns amid Gulf states' anger

No confirmation yet about whether President Aoun has accepted Charbel Wehbe's resignation

Naim Berjawi  | 19.05.2021 - Update : 19.05.2021
Lebanon foreign minister resigns amid Gulf states' anger

BEIRUT, Lebanon

Lebanese Foreign Minister Charbel Wehbe on Wednesday asked to be relieved of his duties amid the Gulf outrage over his recent remarks seen as offensive.

“I have presented to [President Michel Aoun] a request to be relieved of my responsibilities as foreign affairs minister in the caretaker government,” Wehbe said in statements cited by the official Lebanese news agency.

There is no confirmation yet about whether Aoun has accepted the resignation of the minister.

Wehbe drew the ire of the Gulf countries after he said in an interview on Monday with the US-funded Alhurra TV channel: “Those countries of love, friendship and fraternity, they brought us Daesh/ISIS," and then going on to describe a Saudi guest as “Bedouin people.”

Wehbe refused to name these countries during the interview.

His remarks have sparked outrage in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Bahrain, and the United Arab Emirates, which responded by summoning Lebanon’s ambassadors to protest the statements.

* Bassel Barakat contributed to this report from Ankara

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