Who Is Behind Yemen’s Billboards in Support of Lebanese Minister?

Published November 1st, 2021 - 08:45 GMT
Sanaa billboard in support of George Kurdahi
George Kurdahi's comments over the Yemen war angered Saudi Arabia. (Twitter: @abdusalamsalah)

As the Lebanese-Saudi crisis deepens with the majority of Gulf states cutting diplomatic ties with Lebanon over remarks made by its minister of information, several billboards have appeared in the Yemeni capital saluting George Kurdahi and agreeing with his statements.

The crisis between Lebanon and several GCC states started when a talk show featured the Lebanese Minister of Information Goerge Kurdahi and asked him about his views regarding the war in Yemen.

Goerge Kurdahi expressed his wishes that the war ends very soon saying that he believed it was "pointless." He also described the Houthi militant group which is the main counterpart of the Saudi-led coalition as "resistance forces" equating them to Hezbollah's actions against Israel in Southern Lebanon prior to May 2000.

While Kurdahi's remarks triggered massive anger in Saudi Arabia where the government decided to withdraw its ambassador from Beirut and announced the Lebanese ambassador as persona non grata, Kurdahi refused the Saudi request of an apology saying that his answers were based on personal views and that the show was recorded a month before he took his government position.

The UAE, Kuwait, and Bahrain have also announced Lebanese ambassadors unwelcome until an official apology from George Kurdahi to Saudi Arabia.

The former TV star known through the Saudi-funded MBC, Goerge Kurdahi said that his views do not reflect those of the Lebanese government; refusing the Saudi reaction which has been targeting the Lebanese government as a whole.

However, local Yemenis in Sanaa have posted photos showing billboards in the city featuring Goerge Kurdahi's photo along with the hashtag #نعم_جورج_حرب_اليمن_عبثية (Arabic for Yes George_the Yemen War is pointless). The photo was also shared on Twitter by the spokesperson of the Houthi movement Mohammad Abdusalam Salah.

Online, conversations over the decision of installing these billboards suggested that it might be the Houthis defended by Kurdahi during his controversial remarks, especially that the Iranian-backed group has full control over Sanaa.

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