BEIRUT (AP) — Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri has headed to Saudi Arabia in his first visit to the kingdom since his now-reversed resignation from Riyadh late last year in a bizarre sequence of events that deeply strained relations between the two countries.
Hariri arrived in Saudi Arabia early Wednesday, and is expected to meet the king and his powerful crown prince. His visit followed an invite by a Saudi envoy who visited Hariri in Beirut.
Hariri’s visit is likely to boost relations with his Saudi backers.
Relations between Hariri and Saudi rulers took a major hit last year. Hariri reversed his resignation — submitted from the kingdom — upon returning to Beirut, saying he reached a domestic deal to distance Lebanon from regional conflicts. The resignation was widely perceived as Saudi-orchestrated.