Opposition calls Lebanese PM to quit following security chief killing
The Lebanese opposition called Friday for the departure of the government, where Hizbullah, an ally of Damascus plays a predominant role. This call came after the assassination of a prominent security chief.
"We call on the government and its leader to resign immediately, because keeping the government provides the greatest protection and coverage for criminal conspiracies," according to a statement read by Ahmad Hariri, a spokesman for the opposition, following an emergency meeting.
"Prime Minister Najib Mikati is personal responsibility for killing General Wissam al-Hassan and other innocent persons" killed in the attack in Beirut.
Earlier, the opposition leader, Saad Hariri, openly accused Syrian President Bashar al-Assad of ordering the assassination of General Hassan.
"The assassination of martyr General Wissam al-Hassan (...) means that the forces of evil and terrorism are determined to continue the mission they had set by the assassination of (former Prime minister) Rafiq Hariri in 2005."
This assassination plunged Lebanon into turmoil. Damascus had been singled out as the mastermind of series of assassinations that had bloodied Lebanon between 2005 and 2008 and targeted personalities hostile to the Syrian regime.
Meanwhile, Iran on Saturday condemned the blast in Beirut. It accused Israel of being behind the attack.
"Iran condemns terrorist bombing perpetrated by those who seek to create divisions between the various Lebanese groups to the detriment of the interests of Lebanon," said the spokesman of the Foreign Ministry Ramin Mehmanparast.
"Undoubtedly, the main enemy of the Lebanese people is the Zionist regime, who benefits more from the instability and lack of security in the region," he added.
For his part, the Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi accused "enemies of the region" who "seek to increase insecurity to achieve their malicious goals." He made these comment during a telephone interview Friday night with his Lebanese counterpart Adnan Mansour , according to the ministry's website.