Lebanese PM's visit forms strong base for bilateral relations: Syrian FM

08:24, July 19, 2010      

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Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri's visit to Syria "forms a strong base for the relationships between the two countries," Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al- Moallem told Xinhua on Sunday.

Hariri's visit is very important, al-Moallem said, adding this visit differs from the previous ones as it is not restricted within the political field only.

It draws a picture of distinctive future ties between Syria and Lebanon, he said.

It is Hariri's fourth visit since he took office in December 2009. Hariri paid a landmark visit to Damascus last December, which ended nearly five years of bitterness between the two countries.

Lebanon has been accusing Syria of standing behind the assassination of the former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri in Beirut on Feb. 14, 2005, which Syria always denied.

On the delineation of borders between Syria and Lebanon, al- Moallem said the issue must be considered in its social context and with an eye to Syrian families living in Lebanon and Lebanese families in Syria.

Al-Moallem also told Xinhua that Syrian President Bashar al- Assad will pay a visit to Lebanon in the near future, saying it will be a historic one. Lebanese President Michel Suleiman invited his Syrian counterpart to visit Lebanon last June.

The two neighbors agreed in August 2008 to establish diplomatic ties for the first time since their independence, they set up embassies in each other's country in May 2009.

On the Israeli spy nets detected recently in Lebanon, al- Moallem said Israel is an enemy and Syria hopes Lebanese security forces could detect more spies working for Israel.

Since April, the Lebanese authorities have been carrying out a wide campaign against Israeli spy nets during which some 70 people have been arrested.

Source: Xinhua


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