Clooney wedding 'good news for the Middle East'

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Newlyweds George Clooney and Amal Alamuddin are expected to officialise their marriage at a civil service in Venice on Monday. Photo: Pierre Teyssot
08:29 CEST+02:00
George Clooney's Lebanese father-in-law said on Sunday that his daughter Amal Alamuddin's wedding to the Hollywood heartthrob was "very good news" for the turmoil-ridden Middle East.

A the newlyweds prepared for a civil service at Venice town hall on Monday to officialise their marriage, Ramzi Alamuddin said: "The wedding was more than perfect."

"The couple was very happy about how they were welcomed in Venice."

Clooney and his Lebanese-British lawyer bride married on Saturday at a star-studded private wedding, although they are expected to officially tie the knot on Monday.

Ramzi Alamuddin said the wedding was a "grand" but "simple" affair, with close friends and relatives attending an event he described as "good news".

"It is very good news among the bad news we are living now," he told AFP by telephone from Venice.

The celebrity nuptials come as unrest grips much of the Middle East, where a US-led coalition is staging air strikes on the jihadist Islamic State group in Lebanon's neighbour Syria and in Iraq.

Saturday's ceremony also coincided with Al-Qaeda's Syria franchise, Al-Nusra Front, threatening reprisals against the coalition which includes several Arab allies.

Other Lebanese agreed that the wedding was the only good news to have emerged from their problem-riddled Mediterranean nation.

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"The roads in the country are blocked, we don't have a president, parliament is paralysed, (Prime Minister Tammam) Salam is busy with the issue of the soldiers (kidnapped by jihadists), and the country is on the verge of collapse," said one Twitter user, using the hashtag #congratulations.

"But thank God, Clooney has become the son of Lebanon," he added.

Parliament in Beirut has tried but failed several times since June to elect a new president, but a vote has been delayed again and again by political wrangling.

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