Berri dialogue pitch makes no headway as next election session draws near

Go down

Berri dialogue pitch makes no headway as next election session draws near

Post by Admin on Sun Apr 20, 2008 5:59 am

Less
than a week ahead of yet another Parliament session to elect a new
president scheduled for April 22, Speaker Nabih Berri's proposed
national dialogue does not seem to be in the offing, with the fate of
next week's prospective vote hanging in the balance.


As
Amal Movement MP Ali Hassan Khalil said Wednesday that Berri would
continue to pursue the holding of a national dialogue from April 18 to
21, March 14 Forces MP Butros Harb said that the proposed dialogue was
unnecessary.


"Dialogue should start after electing a new head of state," Harb said.

Lebanon's
Parliament has failed to elect a new president on 17 occasions. The
presidential seat has been vacant since Emile Lahoud left office last
November.


Meanwhile,
former President Amin Gemayel said after meeting Siniora on Wednesday
that the ruling March 14 Forces coalition was politically resisting a
foreign attack on Lebanon.


"The
situation would have been much easier and more tolerable had our
problem been with Lebanese parties that have a view different than
ours, but in fact we are standing in the face of foreign parties that
want the Lebanese to act against their national interests," Gemayel
said.


The Phalange Party chief added that Lebanon was not alone in this battle.

"The majority of Arabs are on our side and so is the international community," he said.

Gemayel
also criticized Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun for
"using the issue of naturalizing Palestinians in Lebanon to cover up
for the real problem in the country."


"Everybody
knows we have made a lot sacrifices to prevent the naturalizing of
Palestinians in Lebanon, but this issue is irrelevant right now," he
said.


"It
is only being used to distract the public from the main threat that the
country is facing, and that is the opposition's coup against state
institutions and the Constitution," he added.


Also
Wednesday, US Charge d'Affaires Michele Sison dismissed earlier media
reports indicating that US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice had said
the United States was in favor of maintaining the current status quo in
Lebanon.


Local
newspaper As-Safir reported earlier this week that Rice had said she
was in favor of maintaining Prime Minister Fouad Siniora's government
and extending the mandate of the current Parliament.


In
an interview with another local daily, An-Nahar, Sison expressed
continuous US support for the Siniora government, arguing that it was
illogical to hold Washington responsible for the prevailing
presidential vacuum in the country.


Sison
described the allegations that Washington was obstructing the election
of a new head of state in Lebanon and prolonging the country's crisis
as "total nonsense."

She
stressed that Lebanon remains a primary concern for the United States,
denying claims that Washington is more set on maintaining Siniora's
government than supporting the election of a new president.


"As
long as the presidency is vacant, the United States backs the current
government as well as other constitutional and security institutions in
Lebanon," Sison said.


"Washington
is keen on the election of new president without delay," the diplomat
added, adding that she hoped a new head of state would be elected on
April 22.


"Senior
US officials have called on rival Lebanese parties to end the
presidential vacuum. We believe Lebanon's independence is in jeopardy
due to the ongoing political stalemate," Sison said, blaming the
Hizbullah-led opposition for the prevalent situation in Lebanon.


Sison
stressed that "Washington supports a Lebanese solution but cannot
decide on behalf of Lebanese parties the measures they ought to take to
end the deadlock."


She
criticized some parties for linking the Lebanese crisis to the upcoming
presidential elections in the United States, stressing that both US
Democrats and Republicans had a common view on Lebanon.


_________________
avatar
Admin
Admin
Admin

Male
Number of posts : 580
Age : 37
Registration date : 2008-03-03

View user profile http://leb-spy.forumotion.com

Back to top Go down

Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum