Saudi, Syria leaders urge Lebanon to avoid resorting to violence
Visiting Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and Saudi King Abdullah on Friday called on Lebanese parties to avoid resorting to violence in the face of growing political tensions in the country. "The leaders stressed the importance of stability... the commitment (of the Lebanese) not to resort to violence and the need to place the country's interests above all sectarian interests," said a communiqué issued by the Lebanese presidency after a mini-summit between the two leaders and President Michel Suleiman.
The statement also stressed the need to "resort to legal institutions and Lebanon's unity government to resolve any differences."
The Syrian president and Saudi monarch paid the visit to Beirut in an effort to defuse tensions over reports of an impending indictment against members of Hizbullah for former premier Rafik Hariri's murder.
The communiqué urged Lebanese parties to "pursue the path of appeasement and dialogue and to boost national unity in the face of outside threats." The Saudi and Syrian leaders said they stood in solidarity with Lebanon "in the face of Israel's daily violations of its sovereignty and its attempts to destabilize the country."
Asked about the outcome of the brief talks as he left the presidential palace, Assad said: "The discussions were excellent."