Lebanese President Emile Lahoud has announced his country would boycott the Sommet de la Francophonie, the summit of the French-speaking world that Romania hosts this week, because he did not receive an official invitation. Still, Lebanese PM Fuad Sanioram who received such an invitation, has sent a representative to the events in Bucharest.

Lahoud had blamed French President Jacques Chirac directly for “pressing” his Romanian counterpart Traian Basescu not to invite him at the summit.

The presence of any Lebanese official at the event will be personal and (s)he will not represent the Lebanese state or have any contribution to the summit decisions, Lahoud stated. He said the Romanian decision not to invite him “violates the sovereignity and dignity of Lebanon”.

The French Presidency has dismissed accusations that it pressed the Romanian head of state not to invite the Lebanese leader to the summit.

The summit in Bucharest gathers 22 heads of state, 11 prime ministers and 36 Foreign ministers from French-speaking countries around the world.