Rifi Backs Jamali after Meeting Hariri at Saniora's House


Prime Minister Saad Hariri, ex-minister Ashraf Rifi and ex-PM Fouad Saniora held a meeting Tuesday evening at the latter's residence in Beirut's Bliss area.

Saniora announced after the meeting that Rifi has decided to pull out of the race for Tripoli's vacant Sunni seat and to support the nomination of al-Mustaqbal Movement's candidate Dima Jamali, whose membership of parliament was recently revoked by the Constitutional Council.

The meeting was held in the presence of ex-minister Rashid Derbas.

“Today a new chapter has been opened and we should close ranks,” said Hariri after the meeting.

“God willing, the page has been turned on the past and all the consensus and unanimity we are witnessing today is in Tripoli's interest,” the PM added.

“Tripoli needs all its sons and we must work to pull it out of the poverty it is living in,” Hariri went on to say.

Rifi for his part said: “We are rising above trivial things because the country is in danger and the priority is for confronting the challenges.”

Voice of Lebanon radio (93.3) had reported that the meeting began with “a frank exchange and a reconciliation” between Hariri and Rifi.

The radio network said Saniora, Derbas and several figures who have ties to Hariri and Rifi had exerted efforts to see the meeting happen.

The meeting comes in the wake of a confrontation over corruption allegations between Saniora and Hizbullah.