PM Hariri says Iran should not interfere in Lebanon’s affairs

File photo showing Lebanese Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri sits with Prime Minister-designate Saad Al-Hariri inside the parliament building in Beirut, Lebanon, May 28, 2018. (Reuters)
Updated 12 June 2018
0

PM Hariri says Iran should not interfere in Lebanon’s affairs

BEIRUT: Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri has criticized a top Iranian general for comments he reportedly made recently in which he praised Iran-backed groups for making gains in last month’s parliamentary elections.
The Iran-backed Hezbollah and its allies gained more than half the seats of the 128-member parliament in the May 6 parliamentary elections.
Lebanese media aired a video posted on social media showing Gen. Qassem Soleimani, the head of Iran’s elite Quds Force, saying that Hezbollah’s victory came at a time when some Arab countries labeled it and its leaders as terrorists.
Hariri told reporters later Monday that the comments are “regrettable,” adding that interfering in Lebanon’s internal affairs is “not in their (Iran’s) interest, nor those of Lebanon or the region.”


Iran vows to keep military forces in Syria despite Israeli threats

Updated 17 January 2019
0

Iran vows to keep military forces in Syria despite Israeli threats

  • Israel says it has carried out more than 200 attacks against Iranian targets in Syria in the last two years
  • Iran's Revolutionary Guards’ top commander called Israeli PM Netanyahu’s threats “a joke”

LONDON: Iran will keep military forces in Syria, the head of the elite Revolutionary Guards said on Wednesday, defying Israeli threats that they might be targeted if they do not leave the country.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Tuesday that Israeli forces would continue to attack Iranians in Syria and warned them “to get out of there fast, because we will continue with our resolute policy.”

Rebuffing the threats, Maj. Gen. Mohammad Ali Jafari, the Revolutionary Guards’ top commander, was quoted as saying by the semi-official ISNA news agency that “the Islamic Republic of Iran will keep all its military and revolutionary advisers and its weapons in Syria.”

Jafari called Netanyahu’s threats “a joke,” and warned that the Israeli government “was playing with (a) lion’s tail.”

“You should be afraid of the day that our precision-guided missiles roar and fall on your head,” he said.

Iran and Russia have both backed Syria’s Bashar Assad in a seven-year war against opposition and militants, and have sent thousands of soldiers to the country.

Israel, increasingly concerned that its enemy Iran may establish a long-term military presence in neighboring Syria, says it has carried out more than 200 attacks against Iranian targets in Syria in the last two years.

Netanyahu said on Sunday that Israeli warplanes carried out an attack on what he called an Iranian arms cache in Syria.