Syrian President to visit Lebanon Next Week at the Start of an Arab Tour
Syrian President Bashar Assad is expected on a visit in Lebanon next week on the first leg of an Arab tour that would also cover Egypt, Saudi Arabia and other Arab capitals, reported Kuwait News Agency, (KUNA), quoting Lebanese government sources.
They said that the visit would be an opportunity to prepare for the formation of the upcoming government in Beirut, when the new parliament comes to session on October 17th.
The Syrian President will hold meeting with Lebanese officials on Monday, said the sources.
In an interview published last week in Beirut, Syrian Foreign Minister Farouk Shara said that this would be Assad's first visit outside Syria since he assumed the presidency.
Meanwhile, Syrian officials were quoted by the London-based Arabic paper Al Hayat as saying that Syria is considering reducing its military presence in Lebanon, reported Haaretz newspaper.
They added that some roadblocks may be removed and fewer Syrian soldiers will be seen in the streets.
According to Haaretz, Bashar Assad had already decided to cut the number of Syrian roadblocks in Lebanon four months ago.
Syria does not, however, intend to pull out its army from Lebanon, but only to keep a lower profile, added the paper.
The Lebanese elections that ended September 3rd resulted in the victory of many veteran Syrian critics – (Several Sources)
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