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Lebanon’s prime minister says he resigned to save his country from imminent danger and has vowed to return home “in days”.

Speaking in Saudi Arabia, in his first public comments since quitting last week, Saad Hariri said he was “free” and could travel despite speculation he was under house arrest.

Mr Hariri, who vowed to return “very soon”, also said he could reverse his surprise decision to resign but only if Iranian-allied Lebanese militant group Hezbollah stayed out of regional conflicts.

He said his resignation, which rocked Middle East politics, was designed to “cause a positive shock” in the country.

And he warned against interference by Saudi rival Iran, which he said was ruining relations with other Arab countries.

Mr Hariri, who holds dual Lebanese-Saudi citizenship and is an ally of Riyadh, did not state who was threatening Lebanon, in an interview with his party’s Future TV station.

Posters of Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri in Beirut, with the caption reading 'We are all Saad'

Image: Posters of Mr Hariri in Beirut, with the caption reading ‘We are all Saad’

In his resignation statement on 4 November, he accused Iran and Hezbollah of taking over his country and destabilising the broader region, saying he feared for his life.

But his subsequent week-long absence from Lebanon has sparked speculation he is not free to move or leave the kingdom.

:: Analysis: Lebanese crisis stirs Middle East tensions

Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah, whose movement is part of Mr Hariri’s government but backed by Iran, has said Mr Hariri was “detained in Saudi Arabia” and was “banned from returning to Lebanon”.

Lebanese officials have said his resignation was not accepted because it was declared in Saudi Arabia.

Riyadh has accused Hezbollah and Iran of supporting Shia rebels in Yemen known as Houthis.

A Saudi-led coalition has been at war with the Houthis since March 2015 and last week a rocket was intercepted near Riyadh.

America and Saudi Arabia said it was fired from Yemen and that Iran had supplied the weapon.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has warned other countries against using the crisis in Lebanon as a “venue for proxy conflicts”.

World News – Breaking international news and headlines | Sky News

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