He called for an urgent national dialogue.. The Lebanese president calls for good relations with all Arab countries
Lebanese President Michel Aoun said that he wants good relations with all Arab countries, especially the Gulf states, while internally he called for an urgent national dialogue to reach an understanding on administrative decentralization.
Aoun confirmed – in a speech broadcast on television – that he desires the best relations with the Gulf countries after a severe diplomatic crisis in October, during which Saudi Arabia cut diplomatic relations with Lebanon against the background of statements by former Information Minister George Qardahi about the war in Yemen.
Riyadh accuses Hezbollah of supporting the Houthis in Yemen and of imposing its hegemony on the Lebanese political system.
“What is the justification for straining relations with these countries and interfering in matters that do not concern us?” Aoun asked.
In this context, the Lebanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs “strongly condemned the terrorist attack on the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in the Samtah Governorate in the Jazan region.”
On Friday evening, the Arab coalition, led by Saudi Arabia, announced the killing of a Saudi and a Yemeni resident, and the wounding of others, after a projectile fired by the Houthi group fell on the south of the kingdom.
The Lebanese Foreign Ministry affirmed, “Lebanon’s permanent government and people stand by the brotherly Kingdom of Saudi Arabia against everything that affects its security, stability and the safety of its citizens.”
Urgent National Dialogue
On the domestic front, Lebanese President Michel Aoun called on Monday for the cabinet to meet as soon as possible, more than two months after his ally Hezbollah disrupted government sessions.
Aoun said, “I call for an urgent national dialogue in order to understand and work on 3 issues, namely the expanded administrative and financial decentralization, the defense strategy to protect Lebanon, and the plan for financial and economic recovery.”
He asked, “By what Sharia, logic or constitution, is the Council of Ministers suspended, and its work is suspended due to an issue that does not constitute a charter dispute?”
On October 13, the cabinet session, which was scheduled at the time, was postponed indefinitely, following the insistence of ministers affiliated with Hezbollah and the Amal movement, that the council discuss the investigation file of the Beirut port explosion, in preparation for the dismissal of the judicial investigator, Judge Tariq. Al-Bitar, after being accused of politicizing, and no ministerial session has been held since that date.
Lebanon has been suffering for more than two years from an unprecedented severe economic crisis that led to a record collapse in the value of the local currency against the dollar, as well as a shortage of fuel and medicine, and the collapse of purchasing power.