May 24th, 2010
12:56 PM ET
5 years ago

Obama to talk security with Lebanon's prime minister

 Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri meets with President Barack Obama on Monday on his first official visit to Washington.
Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri meets with President Barack Obama on Monday on his first official visit to Washington.

Washington (CNN) - Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri meets with President Barack Obama on Monday on his first official visit to Washington after assuming office, the White House announced.

The two are expected to talk about a broad range of issues, including regional peace and security.

These are the first face-to-face talks between the two men since the United States moved to put an ambassador back in Syria, a country with which Lebanon has a difficult relationship.

Washington pulled its ambassador from Damascus in 2005, after Hariri's father, former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, was killed in a huge car bombing, which the United States blamed on Syria.

Syria denied the accusations, but an investigation by a United Nations Special Tribunal found Syrian government involvement.

The 2005 bombing led to massive protests in Lebanon, prompting Syria to withdraw the troops it had kept in Lebanon for decades.

Hariri has also made moves to improve relations with Syria.

The Obama administration wants to renew dialogue with Syria as part of a wider effort for establish regional peace.

It nominated veteran diplomat Robert Ford, an Arabic speaker, to serve as ambassador in February. He has not yet taken up the post.

soundoff (7 Responses)
  1. MNLiberal--not because it's cool, because it's right

    Robert Ford's as good as anyone to take the job, though this whole venture could get ugly if Israel starts complaining. Then again, I'm one of those libs who says its time that Israel started taking care of itself and that the USA shouldn't have to cater to that country's interests anymore. They've shown that they can handle that region without difficulty.

    Also, I can't wait to read the comments that the right will post about this meeting being part of Obama's socialist, terrorist-baiting, Muslim-loviing, photo-op agenda, blah blah blah.

    May 24, 2010 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  2. diridi

    pass this immigration reform....hold employers liable and accountable who hire illegals, and foreigner who do not have status...ok....do not worry for Horvard and duke diplomas...they mean nothing absolutely nothing.....ok....if you are smart go to state school to save money....it is my advise to All American Kids...ok...writer is a very well educated with four diplomas....from India...ok

    May 24, 2010 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  3. Will

    Obama won't even secure our own border so how is talking about security in Lebanon is just what is means – all talk. Obama has to stick with what he excels at talking without any action.

    May 24, 2010 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  4. Joe

    Dear President, please don't save the world yet, please save the gulf and save the America first. If you can not do it or don't know how to do it, please just blame Bush! This is the best bet for you!

    May 24, 2010 01:47 pm at 1:47 pm |
  5. Tim

    Another new friend of Obama.

    May 24, 2010 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  6. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    As long as the Lebanese prime minister can start to work to end the control Hezbolla has over the country, then I think that we can work with them. It is crazy that a terrorist organization, which hasn't renounced terrorisms and murdering Israelis and Jews, can be a part of a government. I just hope that Lebanon can control their boarder so that no more weapons come in that are for attacking Israel.

    May 24, 2010 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  7. Ben S. Pauls

    Obama, we all know you think of yourself as the ruler of the world, but don't you think you should earn you pay and take care of the problems in the USA first?

    May 24, 2010 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |