US President Donald Trump will host Lebanon’s Prime Minister Saad Hariri at the White House next week, during which the two leaders would discuss a wide range of issues including fight against terrorism. “The two leaders will discuss issues of mutual concern, including the fight against terrorism, the economy, and refugees,” the White House said in a statement. Hariri would visit the White House on July 25.
“This meeting will serve as an important opportunity to strengthen the bilateral relationship and will encourage other international and regional partners to support Lebanon as it faces a wide range of challenges,” the statement said. A day earlier, US Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, accused Lebanon’s Hezbollah of amassing weapons.
“Ambassador Haley expressed alarm over the build-up of weapons by Hizballah, a situation that demands the international community’s attention to prevent the further escalation of regional tensions,” a US statement said after Haley met with UN Special Coordinator for Lebanon Sigrid Kaag. Haley and Kaag discussed the political, security, and humanitarian challenges that Lebanon faces, as well as the importance of increasing the capacity of Lebanese state institutions
Trump and Hariri’s meeting may also address concerns over the support Lebanon-based Hezbollah is providing to Syria’s President Bashar Assad in his crackdown on civilians.