Riyadh — Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman held talks with Lebanese President Michel Aoun at Al-Yamama Palace here on Tuesday.
Aoun arrived in the capital on Monday on a two-day official visit to Saudi Arabia, his first to a foreign country as head of state.
The Lebanese president is accompanied by ministers of finance, education, foreign affairs, defense, interior, information and economy and commerce.
“Lebanon seeks cooperation with Saudi Arabia,” Aoun told Saudi television channel Al-Ekhbaria on Tuesday.
He said his ministers of foreign affairs, education, finance and information would meet their counterparts to discuss areas of cooperation.
Aoun told the Saudi channel that Lebanon’s partners “have agreed to build Lebanon, regardless of the results in the other countries, because building Lebanon is for all, and secondly, security and stability is for all.”
He said his country’s internal political situation has improved, and expressed confidence that “balance” can be maintained.
“The state must realize, and maintain, security and stability for individuals and groups even if there are different political visions regarding neighboring and regional countries,” Aoun said.
Lebanese Ambassador to Riyadh Abdul Sattar Mohammed Issa said the Lebanese president was determined to make Saudi Arabia the first stop on his foreign visits, which confirms the strength of the relationship between the two countries.
Lebanon’s Minister of Information Melhem Riachy described Aoun’s visit as “positive” and said it would strengthen the relationship between the two countries.
Leader of the Lebanese Forces Samir Geagea described the visit as “excellent,” Lebanon’s Grand Mufti Abdul Latif Derian said that relations between Lebanon and Saudi Arabia have been continuous and expressed hope that the visit will boost relations between the two countries.
President of the Federation of Lebanese Commerce Chambers Mohamed Choucair said the visit would develop Lebanon’s economy.
The Lebanese Council of Business and Investments in the Kingdom welcomed the visit and said it reflects Lebanon’s keenness to further consolidate its strong ties with Saudi Arabia.
The council’s chairman, Mohammed Shaheen, hoped that the visit would open a new page in relations between the two countries.
“The visit takes place at an important juncture. We hope it will pave the way for Saudis to start visiting Lebanon as they used to do in the past,” he said.
Aoun will travel to Qatar at the end of his visit to the Kingdom.