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Last Updated: Wednesday, 19 November, 2003, 16:39 GMT
US cancels visa for MP Jumblatt
Walid Jumblatt
Jumblatt described Wolfowitz as a "virus"
A senior Lebanese politician says his US visa has been revoked for expressing regret that a top US defence official survived a Baghdad missile attack.

Walid Jumblatt said a letter from the US Embassy in Beirut notified him that his multiple visa had been cancelled.

Last month, Mr Jumblatt described US Deputy Defence Secretary Paul Wolfowitz as a virus that should be destroyed.

The Lebanese MP said he regretted Mr Wolfowitz was unhurt in the 26 October attack, which killed one US soldier.

"We hope that next time the rockets will be more accurate and effective in getting rid of this virus, and his like, who wreak corruption in the Arab lands," Mr Jumblatt said after the attack.

Outspoken politician

The letter sent to Mr Jumblatt by the US State Department was published by Lebanon's Al-Mostaqbal newspaper.

It said his visa - valid until 2007 - had been withdrawn under a section of the Immigration and Nationality Act, according to the newspaper.

The letter - dated 17 November - said the decision had been taken as a visa "cannot be given to an alien who has used the alien's position and prominence within any country to endorse or espouse terrorist activity".

Mr Jumblatt confirmed the newspaper report on Wednesday.

A leader of Lebanon's Druze community and the Progressive Socialist Party, Mr Jumblatt is known for his outspoken remarks on various issues.

He also heads the third biggest bloc in the 128-seat legislature.


SEE ALSO:
The Druze: Love across the divide
24 Mar 99  |  Middle East
Country profile: Lebanon
11 Sep 03  |  Country profiles


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