BEIRUT: Lebanese journalist and host of the political talk show ‘Kalam Ennas’ Marcel Ghanem has found himself embroiled in a scandal after appearing to flip off while discussing the circumstances surrounding Prime Minister Saad Hariri's interview two weeks ago from Saudi Arabia.
Ghanem was a guest on the morning talk show 'Ya Rima' on ‘Sawt El Ghad’ radio station.
While discussing Hariri’s demeanor during his interview on Future TV from Saudi Arabia two weeks ago, which many described as an interview under duress, Ghanem resorted to using the ill-advised gesture after saying “that I have to go by what he said.” Hariri had denied that the interview was staged or that he was being held in the Saudi Kingdom against his will.
This caused a backlash after the video was widely shared on social media, prompting Ghanem to issue a statement explaining that “the gesture was aimed at those threatening and disrespecting me, as well as those who have attacked my character.”
Ghanem had come under fire from Hezbollah’s supporters after he hosted on his show 'Kalam Ennas' two Saudi journalists who accused Lebanese President Michel Aoun, Speaker Nabih Berri, Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil and Army Commander General Joseph Aoun of providing cover to the “terrorist Hezbollah group.”
According to Ghanem, the 'Ya Rima' show producer was "transmitting him a direct feed of all these insults during the interview”, and the intended recipients of this spontaneous gesture were his “abusers and not Lebanese officials”. Ghanem also apologized for his actions.
Ghanem also said that he contacted Hariri, clarifying the situation, which “Hariri completely understood.”
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