PRESIDENT AOUN ON THE DAY OF BINDING PARLIAMENTARY CONSULTATIONS: DESIGNATING PM SAAD HARIRI TO FORM NEW GOVERNMENT BY A MAJORITY OF 65 VOTES
President of the Republic, Michel Aoun, dedicated before noon today, to conduct parliamentary consultations at Baabda Palace, to determine who will head the new government , and according to these consultations, Prime Minister Saad Hariri was designated for this responsibility after he was nominated by 65 MPs. President Aoun informed Speaker Nabih Berri, of the outcome of the consultations, while Prime Minister Hariri was summoned to the Presidential Palace for his assignment.
Speaker Berri stressed on optimism in the atmosphere, especially between President Aoun and Hariri, and in particular, between the future Movement and the FPM, hoping for a government formations soon as possible.
For his part, the PM -designate affirmed that he is determined to abide by his promise to work to stop the collapse “that threatens our economy, our society and our security, and to rebuild what was destroyed by the terrible port explosion in Beirut, while the first focus is on forming a government soon, because time is running out, and the only opportunity for our beloved country.”
Former PM Najib Mikati
President Aoun had started the parliamentary consultations at nine o’clock in the morning with a meeting with MP NagibMikati, who said: “In line with the position I announced after Dr. Mustafa Adeeb’s apology for forming the government, I announce the nomination of Prime Minister Saad Hariri to form the new government, I was honored today to meet His Excellency the President and officially name Mr. Saad Hariri to head of the new government, hoping that all efforts will be combined for the success of Prime Minister Hariri’s work to form an effective government capable of carrying out the reforms required to restore internally and internationally confidence.
I have asked His Excellency the President to always be the father of all Lebanese and , to be a rule as stipulated in the constitution, and not to be a party or a side.
PM Saad Hariri
As for Prime Minister Hariri, he left the presidential palace after meeting with President Aoun without making any statement.
MP Tammam Salam
The President of the Republic received former PM TammamSalam, who said: “Today we are in the process of pursuing the attempt to save the country from the situation that it has reached, its deterioration and great collapse. Today we are facing a new attempt under international supervisions and care, especially by French President Emmanuel Macron and the French initiative that will assign Saad Hariri with great responsibility in facing this entitlement, and I hope everyone will help him to complete the formation of the government away from obstruction. Time cannot be wasted and delayed and therefore, the Lebanese, all the Lebanese, are waiting for the formation of a government capable of advancing to a certain stage. There is a plan. reform has become clear to everyone. Therefore, I wish Prime Minister Hariri success, and I expressed to His Excellency the President my support for Prime Minister Hariri’s nomination for this task.”
He was asked whether he held former prime ministers responsible for obstructing association with President Mustafa Adeb?
He answered: The role of former prime ministers, from their sensitive position and their background and great experience and in public responsibilities, especially in the responsibility of heading the Council of Ministers, was not and will not be, neither now nor in the past nor in the future, but a supporter of every rescue attempt. Hence our support for the then-appointed PM Mustafa Adeb, did not back down or give up any aspect of this support during that period.
Question: will personal profiles come to you?
He answered : This is our country, and we are responsible for giving everything we have. I hope it will not be the best in the sense that none of us will give up his responsibilities. Today, however, Prime Minister Hariri faces a major challenge. It is a final attempt in light of the challenges facing us all, either to curb the collapse or to go to the worst. I believe that we have reached a place where the pains of people and citizens have become limitless.
Question: Is there an American and Arab cover for this assignment?
He answer: I do not know of this, but the general atmosphere appears as if there are international stances and efforts to help the Lebanese, and this can only be done through the formation of a rescue government, work and specialists to advance the reform benefits for a period of months, before perhaps moving to other benefits.
Deputy Speaker Elie Ferzli
President Aoun met with the Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Elie Ferzli, who declared that “the compelling reasons that I stand here a year ago to say that my candidate for prime minister is Prime Minister Saad Hariri, still exists today. This is how I see Lebanon’s coexistent image at the level of the top three presidencies, hoping that a government will be formed that will achieve the main goal in the process of reviving the country and preventing it from continuing to collapse.
In response to a question about the absence of two main Christian components in naming Prime Minister Hariri, MP Ferzli answered: “I do not think that there is someone who is more keen than me to prevent any isolation, because if I feel that then I will be a real spearhead in defending and eliminating this isolation.The symbiosis is present, will continue and is in existence. ”
As for his view on the formation of the government, he considered that this matter is a “national duty for Prime Minister Hariri and all political factions concerned with this formation in accordance with the text of Article 95 of the Constitution.”
Regarding his relationship with the President of the Republic and the Free Patriotic Movement, MP Ferzli replied: “His Excellency the President is the elder brother and father, and my relationship with him cannot be undermined by anyone from near or far. The relationship with the Strong Lebanon bloc is equitable and based on mutual respect, and the relationship of a friend with his friend and ally , and the plurality of opinions should be at the core of every political movement in the country. ”
Regarding his lack of success in bringing Prime Minister Hariri together with MP Gebran Bassil, he said: “We will succeed.”
Future Movement Parliament Bloc
Then President Aoun received the Future Movement’s bloc, who name MP Samir Al-Jisr to spoke on their behalf said: “The bloc named President Saad Hariri to be assigned to form the upcoming government.”
Asked about President Aoun’s speech yesterday, He said: “We are with all good words that help the resurrection of the country and help the people by relieving their pain.”
Question: To what extent are you betting on Prime Minister Hariri’s ability to quickly form a government?
He replied: “God willing, it will not be late.
Question: Why did we waste a year if we were going to return to Prime Minister Hariri?
He answered: “You must ask the question of those who wasted the opportunity.”
Loyalty to the resistance bloc
Afterwords, President Aoun, received the Loyalty to the Resistance bloc, whose representative was MP Mohamad Raad, who said: “We are like you. We will not get tired, we will not get bored, we will not despair, and because we see that national understanding as the necessary pathway to preserve Lebanon and protect its sovereignty and interests, and because the success of the political process in the country and the achievement of Lebanon’s interest, the Lebanese in general and in all fields and levels depend on this understanding, and because we believe that the horizons of this understanding should not be closed, the bloc did not name anyone today, so that it might contribute to maintaining a positive atmosphere that broadens the required understanding. ”
National Coalition Bloc
President Aoun met with the National coalition Bloc, who had MP Tony Franjieh spoke on their behalf said: “In this difficult and delicate times in the history of Lebanon, it is necessary to accelerate consultations, assignment and lineup. Today we named MP Saad Hariri to take over the formation of the next government, and we wish him success and have a government far from political disputes, slogans and auctions, from the struggle over the sex of angels, so we evaluate and hold it accountable for its program and achievements. The country is tired and people are exhausted and disgusted by politics, politicians and the country’s situation. We do not want to talk, but rather we want to wait and see how this government will deal with its mission. It is difficult to start restoring a kind of hope to the Lebanese. You cannot wait any longer, because medicines are cut off and foodstuffs will start to be cut off. We hear about the intention to lift the subsidies, Beirut is destroyed and the country needs a government.”
In response to a question, he said, “We are in a hurry to form the government,
and in terms of our demand for ministers, we say that we demand a government that represents the Lebanese and removes injustice on them, and is looking for their money and their hopes and the dream of young people and their lost future in this country.”
Regarding the lack of the Christian umbrella for Prime Minister Hariri, he answered :” We represent enough, and until now the consultations have not ended in order to see how many Christian MPs will nominate Prime Minister Hariri, so let’s wait. Moreover, with respect to all people, we are today in Baabda Palace, where it is shameful to speak sectarian, rather we must speak national. There is a part of the Christians who do not want to fight with the Shiites and do not want to enter into a war of control with the Sunnis, there are Christians who want to build respect to all people, and I know how big we are, we are one of those Christians. Today, the parties taken together do not represent the overwhelming majority of Christians, and the master of the situation among the citizens is despair. Therefore, no one should say that we represent or not, we are enough patriots and Christians to secure this cover. The Christians want to have a government and for their areas of Beirut to be reconstructed as they want a glimmer of hope for the future. God willing, there will be a glimmer of hope in this government, and the task remains in the lineup and the achievements after the assignment, because even the lineup is not what is important, but what is after the formation and the course of the government.“
Democratic Gathering Bloc
President Aoun met with the Democratic gathering bloc, and MP Taymour Jumblatt announced in its name that “in an attempt to save the country or what was left of it from complete collapse and within the framework of support and preservation of the French initiative, the bloc named MP Saad Hariri to head the government.”
Independent central bloc
President Aoun received the Independent Center bloc, MP Jean Obeid announced in its name the nomination of Prime Minister Hariri, and said: “If the country is united with all its elements, it can hardly be confronted, it is important in the next stage to achieve unity to face the huge amount of difficulties and storms, and we can only say we strive and strive for this.”
And about what is said on the absence of a Christian cover for assignment, he replied: “We represent ourselves and the people who voted for us. Embarking on the widest formation and composition is a matter for the benefit of those who receive power, not just for Lebanon, and he cannot solve the problems unless he collects instead of separating.”
And about whether there is an international and regional umbrella for the return of Prime Minister Hariri, he said: “We hope that there will be such a consensus on Lebanon, but it should start at home before moving abroad.”
Regarding his opinion of the percentage of votes that Prime Minister Hariri will receive, he said, “The expression of opinion takes place after the designation. There is a declaration of policies and the formation of the government, and whoever takes the place of authority, and then the judgments are issued instead of being prior. The first option that we talked about in the name of the bloc and its president is to nominate Prime Minister Hariri to be appointed.”
The National Social Bloc
President Aoun the met with the National Social Bloc, who had MP Asaad Hardan spoke on their behalf. He said: “The meeting with His Excellency the President was within the framework of consultations on the issue of assignment in accordance with the constitutional text. We discussed with him quickly and in an intense manner the developments the country . Previously, we reiterate that we are very concerned about the fate of Lebanon at all levels: political disintegration, and sectarian disintegration and the most dangerous product of social and food security, where the citizen moans from the situation and the economic collapse in Lebanon. We hear a daily cry, and you all know how much the society suffers from pressure. No one says what solutions he has, but rather describes the pain, and we are full of descriptions of pain and we want the solutions that governments are supposed to implement. Unfortunately, governments are in a complete vacuum in the country through setting up institutions, with the procedural authority at the forefront. Our demand is a government as soon as possible. It can meet the people’s demands and put the social file as the top priority. Reforms are a priority, and besides them, one must remain alive in order to benefit from them. And if a person is immigrant, hungry, or cannot live with his family, what does he want? Then from the reforms which are necessary, but social security is necessary and the priority is. Accordingly, and in discussions with His Excellency the President, we asked him about the candidates. He said there is one candidate, Prime Minister Saad Hariri, so we told him to please and assume his responsibilities and we called him to head the government.
In response to a question, he said that, with all our contacts and positions, we hold responsibility for the officials who brought the country to where we are, so let them be kind and assume their responsibilities in trying to reform and revive the country again.
In response to another question, he stressed, “We did not changed , the parliamentary bloc announced the position of the party and the national bloc that represents it.”
And about holding the responsibility for those who led the country to what it is, he replied: “He is one of the people, he is the head of government and he was so, is he responsible alone? He is responsible with the officials, so let him be kind and take responsibility.”
Democratic consultative meeting bloc
Then the President of the Republic met with the Democratic Consultative Meeting bloc, who MP Walid Sukkariyah, spoke on their behalf. he said: “We informed His Excellency The President that the consultative meeting refuses to name anyone, especially since there is only one candidate in which we see a renewal of the stage of wrong policies that brought Lebanon to these dilemmas and crises, Emphasizing that our position is not personal in the sense that we will be judging ideas, projects and actions, so we support when we are convinced and oppose when we are not convinced. This depends on the composition, the method, the quality, and the extent of inclusiveness of the government. ”
In response to a question, he answered: “the bloc had previously named PM Hassan Diab when there were forces that wanted to name him, so it was unanimously agreed on, but when there is no alternative to name him with chances of success, we will not do that, and we will not put forward the name of a person who possesses very few votes. ” He pointed out that the bloc discussed the economic situation with representatives of Prime Minister Hariri and did not receive an answer on the economic policy to address the economic situation.
Regarding his response to Hezbollah abandonment of the bloc, he replied: “They did not abandon us, and they have their opinion and we have our opinion. We intersect on many issues, but when naming the President-designate Mustafa Adeb the last time, they chose to name him, which we did not do. There is an intersection in many issues, but we don’t have a single opinion on everything. ”
He was asked about the association of not naming them with their failure to obtain a promise of a ministerial portfolio, he said that the portfolio has nothing to do with the bloc’s decision, but rather with economic policy. There is a $100 billion debt owed by the Lebanese state, and there are those who want to charge it to the Lebanese people (meaning the state only) and sell state institutions. “We reject that. We informed the representatives of Prime Minister Hariri and told them that if you go in this direction, we will not call it, but if you follow a fair economic policy. It protects the people and distributes losses as proposed by the government of Prime Minister Hassan Diab. We may meet and call Prime Minister Hariri, but we have not received an answer.
The Strong Republic bloc
The President of the Republic received the Strong Republic bloc, headed by MP George Adwan who spoke in its name, saying: “In order for our position today to be clearly understood, we must remember that we have been a strong republican bloc since September 2019, that is, a year and a month ago, and before the movement on October 17 and before the French initiative, the party leader Samir Geagea, said in the Baabda meeting clearly that if we did not form an independent government with specialists, and if this government did not implement rotation and not allocate any ministry to any group, and it came with the support of all political forces to implement a specific mission, which is to save the country and achieve reform, we will not get out of this dilemma that we are in . For a year and a month, the calls were blocked, and many promises were made for the Lebanese to hear about even though they are paying the price for it, and the woes that brought us to where we are today. To these people, we did not name a PM based on our principles, but we took into account that whoever is assigned with a majority in the component represented by our Sunni brothers in Lebanon, and since we know that in Lebanon the choice is made in every component, a person with the greatest representative ability should rule. We did not name anyone, but today the Lebanese are asking where are we going in light of the great possibility of assigning Prime Minister Saad Hariri?
The answer to this question is, have the majority of the political class and the majority of people in power learned, in one way or another, and have they learned about those who take people hostage in their livelihood, food, and lives, did you know that they will not be able to complete what they have been doing for years? And did they learn that if there is a quota system and a division under the table and above it, or in a phone call, or with a delegate who comes at the end of the night and negotiates with someone who forms a government on how the government will be, did you know that all of this cannot go on? Did they learn that we must change this pattern? Did they learn that people want to live and want to eat and have access to their medicine? I really do not know. Our past experiences say that the class holding power in various stages has not learned anything and is facing a great test. Have you learned in the face of the tragedies and misfortunes of people and their blows? We don’t have the answer. The answer we have is that our position is linked to these question. We will monitor as a bloc the forming the government, and if it is to be subject to the specifications that are discussed, it will take hours and days as a maximum. Because if we really want to come with independents, and if we do not want to do deals from under the table or negotiate, that is because the idea and its development have been talked for weeks, that the assignment will be completed and within hours the list will be issued and whoever wants to accept or not accept it is all Lebanese public opinion and all people, We are humbly part of the Lebanese public opinion. Here, too, I want to ask the other parties a question: Why don’t you do the same as us? A year ago, we said, and we are still in the same position, that we do not want anything and we do not want to choose ministers. We do not want to deal with the matter or to “confuse” the appointed prime minister or ask the president of the republic. We don’t want anything. We want you to solve people’s problems. What do you lose if you do like us? But if you are continuing with your quotas, deals, and waste, and that this can continue, the coming days will prove to you that you are wrong. ”
In response to a question, he said:” I consider that in the new era, the opportunity is for the Lebanese, people and depositors whose deposits were stolen ,is to conduct a criminal investigation in all state institutions and to punish those who stole people’s money. We are not required to take advantage of one or another opportunity.”
In response to another question, he said, “We will measure the balance of the people if an independent government comes from those with specialization that commits to rotating all the portfolios and presents a reform program that is committed to implementing it for a specific period of time, so that it is based on what is required because our primary concern is not only people, but people and solving their problems.
Regarding the bloc’s participation in putting up names of Christian specialists, he said that the specialist, whether Sunni, Druze, or Christian, are independent specialist, and will be chosen by the President of the Republic and the Prime Minister. Is this not what the constitution says? The judgment will be based on the extent to which these persons are in commitment with the ministries within their competence and independence.”
Deputy Adwan explained that in all democracies there is a ruling majority and a minority that opposes, and if someone who considers himself a majority still considers himself as such, then let him prefer and form a government like Hassan Diab’s government and present it to the people and take the same result. We say that after October 17, everything that existed has changed and we have to accept this matter. Either we go to the government and whoever was laying his hand on the state completes the matter without searching for a cover or beautification by appearance. Rather, he must complete in essence what he was doing, that this is what we tried.”
In response to a question about the President’s intention to cooperate and the ability of Prime Minister Hariri today to form a government, he said: “If the designated president wants to form an independent government with specializations that is committed to rotating, then at least he should try and present it within hours or days and let public opinion be the ruling and to present it with His Excellency the President. As for the intentions of His Excellency the President, I wait for actions and do not read with intentions.
As for Representative Jean Talouzian, he said that we, as a bloc, we met and discuss all issues, and everyone is required if they want to remain in the bloc to abide by these decisions. The group met and discussed the matter over the course of hours and multiple times, and he decided not to name. the decision was: In the event that our colleague, MP Talozian, wanted not to follow the decision of the bloc, he would have taken a decision and left. It is not important how many we are, but what is important is the decision that we make as a bloc, and it is adhered to and whoever wants not to be committed has made the decision to leave the bloc, explaining that within 24 hours we will send a written paper to His Excellency the President about the absence of 3 people: the first for travel and two for illness ۔.
MP Eddy Demurjian
After his meeting with President Aoun, MP Eddy Damerjiansaid: ” I named Prime Minister Saad Hariri to form the next government.”
MP Michel Daher
Then President Aoun met MP Michel Daher, who said: “Today I was honored to meet with His Excellency the President, and I named Prime Minister Saad Hariri, because in my opinion, the time today is for solidarity and we need a national salvation government in the fullest sense of the word, not a time for political agony, because the country’s situation is dangerous on Economic, social and financial levels, and I hope that the government will be able to stop the collapse that I have been warning about for more than two years, and to stop the bleeding phase and move to the rescue phase, and if we are not all within national unity and support the government to start, then in my opinion this government will be the last in Lebanon.”
My presence today, despite my back pain, is to say that we want a government, and emptiness and loss cause bleeding with the people, and we must all stand by Prime Minister Hariri without political agony, and I hope that he will negotiate with all parties to form a government of national reconciliation and not a government of national unity. So that its goal is financial and economic rescue. ”
Regarding his opinion of the position of the strong Lebanon bloc towards Prime Minister Hariri, he indicated that he does not want to talk about anyone else, but the bloc may have felt marginalized and was waiting for Prime Minister Hariri to speak to him, pointing out that he left the bloc. And “I hope to set aside personal issues, and we will all join the country for its salvation, because people can no longer tolerate, and they may have to show what they think of fear.”
In response to a question he made clear that he was not interested in politics, the issue is economic and financial, and if politics is not serving the people, then it has no value. “With respect to the movement, there is a reality that we must live in, and Prime Minister Hariri represents the Sunni component in Lebanon, and in my opinion we must stand by him, and there is a French initiative that no one can afford to lose and the aid that will come, and compassion must be joined to the people who now want to leave.”
MP Nihad Al-Machnouk
Afterwards, President Aoun met with MP Nihad Machnouk, who announced that he had named Prime Minister Saad Hariri for several reasons. He said, “The first reason is his full and public endorsement of the French reform initiative, which is the only one available to us now, noting that the mandate is due to French pressure and the desires of some Lebanese politicians, but authorship needs more countries and more pressure. The second reason is the environment that includes me and Prime Minister Hariri, it is clear that it is not. The existence of a balance in the performance of the constitutional institutions, especially the position of the Council of Ministers, and therefore it is not permissible for this confusion, which I call vacancy for a long time, in the cabinet. The third reason is that these consultations are under the title of the constitution, solidity and the ability to bring the country back to a balance that concerns the lives of citizens and their problems, Because, as I said to His Excellency the President, the Beirut bombing made us all feel as citizens and politicians, and I am one of them, that we were negligent in reading the magnitude of what happened, and in our ability to understand in order to address this matter and rebuild the city in which half of the Lebanese people live in daily. This matter encourages us more to the existence of a government of specialists, and work on its basis begins in earnest.
As for the talk about loyalty, it is always present for toughness and courage and for the reading that we learned from the martyr Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, who writhes in his tomb if he feels what happened in his city, which he built with eyelashes, which turned into ruin by day and a ghost town at night. I hope the composition is less complicated than I think. ”
He was asked about the possibility of a return to the relationship with Prime Minister Hariri, and he replied: “The dispute is political with Prime Minister Hariri, and the agreement is political as well, and there is no personal dispute, and I did not allow myself, as others did, to approach anyone personally. I called him and reassured him when it was said that the explosion was in his house , Prime Minister Hariri always possessed resilience, courage and adherence to the constitution, and he did not always use it, but today he has no choice but to use it, adhere to the constitution and insist on political confrontation with any party without being accountable to what it will lead to because it will not lead to anything, and we It is part of the US-Iranian clash, and there is Iranian tutelage over the Lebanese political decision, which needs a political confrontation. ”
In response to another question, He said: I consider that no one represents the Lebanese state. We are individuals and states that decide their policies. I express a personal point of view and I do not represent any country, even if I defend Arabism, which is our natural identity. I believe that the complexities of the formation will be much greater, even the French ability to overcome them.”
Regarding his participation today in the consultations, he explained that it comes from the matter of responsibility for the extent of the destruction and the imbalance , the French initiative and Prime Minister Hariri’s promises of commitment to the initiative and the reconstruction of Beirut.
MP Osama Saad
MP Osama Saad spoke meeting with President Aoun. He said: “According to the facts of past years, the ruling system was taking Lebanon from bottom to bottom. And according to the atmosphere prevailing today, it seems that we are heading to a new bottom, this is what appears from the quarrels , the chaos of relations and the inability to address crises, people have been killed and killed, they have starved and starved, they have been displaced and displaced, their money stolen and stolen, rulers of bygone eras and outdated ideas confiscate the rights of young people. This was not a creation of predestination, it is the politics and the illusion of the rulers, as if nothing was ever made and the official is not asked and the ruler is eternal and the Lebanese are cut off the ways of life.No one seems to have the moral strength to admit their responsibility, and no one is willing to step down. A picture and tomorrow in Nejmeh Square, another picture, and authorship after commissioning in the scenes of abroad and at home and the nightmares of the Lebanese. If the government is formed, it is according to the requirements of the West and the concerns of the East, and patriotism has been dropped. We said of a transitional national government and this is what I confirmed to His Excellency the President, and that there is no point in a blind internationalized government, whose files are in the stadiums of nations. Lebanon is without national authority, and October 17th will not take life. Rather, youth will break outdated rules and build new rules for a modern, just state. I leave Baabda without names, after I have lost all the names, as they have fallen to the people. ”
MP Fouad Makhzoumi
President Aoun met MP Fouad Makhzoumi, who announced that he did not name Prime Minister Hariri, “because I believe that the way in which he announced his candidacy, and what we have heard about his contacts with all the blocs and returning to before last October 17, as if nothing had happened, does not enable us to convince those who elected us that there is a future for the government. And when we see that each party and sect will nominate its ministers even if they are not partisan, it is a matter that contradicts everything that we have heard from the West regarding the intention to engage and support Lebanon under the framework of an independent government from its head to its members. Today, we see that we have returned to the starting point, so we ask about the change that exists. Regarding who we have elected, we cannot proceed with this matter. The question today is about the reason for manipulating the dollar and the exchange rate, as there is an attempt to revive this system to revive itself and convince us that this is the right choice, but for us, time is passing and there are no solutions. The French initiative is good, but if we want to implement it within the traditional means that existed before the 17th of last October, then it will be a great play for the people. We hope that there will be clarity in composition and on its basis if there are salvage and reform projects, then we will be the first Who defends the government in Parliament ?
In response to a question about his responsibility as a deputy for the situation, he explained that it was the first time that he had reached office and that he had been cheated in the 2018 elections and arrived because the people wanted it. And he is demanding everything that the revolution demanded, and he could not achieve it and the revolution has achieved it. He added, “We presented a 7-point program last November, and we support everyone who can proceed with this project, and I hope that we all think, as Lebanese, about the project from which Prime Minister Hariri has not proposed anything so far. Rather, he spoke about the French initiative that is under fire and withdrawing from it.” From some, we are with the program, and if it is agreed upon, a team must be formed to implement it. ”
MP Shamil Roukoz
Then President Aoun received MP Shamil Roukoz, who said: “Based on my convictions, I did not name anyone to head the government, but I stress the need to form a government as soon as possible, and this constitutes a priority for us and the entire Lebanese people, whether at the internal level: the economic situation, and the social situation. In terms of cash, or in terms of demarcating maritime borders or at the international level, Lebanon needs international support that enables us to advance the economy. ”
He added, “I did not name a prime minister because the person of Prime Minister Hariri is the candidate for the formation, and from here, I consider that matters will go to understandings, whether tripartite, quadruple or hexagonal, which in turn will lead to quotas. These are my convictions, with an emphasis on the need to form a government as soon as possible. It is possible. God willing, things will proceed in better conditions than we expect, but unfortunately, understandings always lead to quotas, and quotas are a path to corruption.”
MP Jamil Sayyed
The President of the Republic received MP Jamil Sayed, who spoke after the meeting, and said: “Of course I did not name anyone out of a private and personal position. Lebanon needs a government, and this is a given, and the government to be formed is its first stop to assign someone. It seems that former Prime Minister Saad Hariri is the person who will get a certain percentage between 60 and 65 votes. However, the reasons for not naming him are primarily due to my lack of conviction, because this government, as I saw it early, and as happened with the nomination of President Mustafa Adeb, where I said that the government will not be formed. But the matter will differ. With Prime Minister Hariri, and he will receive more facilities than Mustafa Adeb, but in the direct reasons that made me nor name him is my conviction is that the person does not change, and he will be obliged in the next composition to take into account the political parties, and in practice it will be a government much like the government of Prime Minister Hassan Diab, with a difference Prime Minister Hariri is its president while President Diab was a technician outside the traditional political team. The other reason that led me not to name it is that last time, they laughed at us with Mustafa Adeb’s play and told us that he is the technician who will come with technicians and support him the heads of state . According to Minister Jumblatt’s words, it became evident that President Najib Mikati was negotiating with him to bring Issam al-Halabi to the Ministry of Education. In Lebanon, since there are no secrets, if you want to give one of them, you must give all, and therefore the four who were behind Mustafa Adeb were lying. The third reason for not naming is that the ministers who will be named will come to departments and institutions that have general directors, heads of state institutions and a central bank, as well as officers, judges, and posts, so is any of them prepared, starting with the prime minister who will come to dispense with his associates, because these are the thieves? Those affiliated with the political team are thieves in the state, including judges, officers, directors, companies and institutions. These are the tools of corruption, who will abandon them? You bring an educated minister from France or America and put him among a group of bullies. What can he do, my answer is no. This is an additional reason not to name it. ”
He added, “As for the fourth reason, Prime Minister Hariri has a plan called the International Monetary Fund that contains two important items: lifting subsidies from the people in the first place and avoiding the exchange rate of the pound against the dollar, so can people bear the bill for the thefts over a period of thirty years? What do you do with that? You are aiming to solve the problem of 80 and 85 billion that has been wasted over the years and you say that you want to collect it from people’s accounts, so why do I follow this plan? Why is the plan not clear and let the judiciary come and determine who worked in the country for the whole period and not now? Thirty and forty years ago, why are these people not exposed? Why do we have to go to the people? The sum of ninety billion does not disappear, but is in banks and properties.I do not accept charging people.
As for the last and important reason, it is related to the International Tribunal for Lebanon, and I always say that I have no hatred and my position is from my head, not from my heart. I have always asked Prime Minister Hariri to apologize for the false witness stage of the investigation of the martyrdom of Prime Minister Hariri. He does not want to apologize and so far he has not apologized. The decision of the International Tribunal was issued a month ago and said that the Lebanese state and the United Nations should apologize to Jamil Sayedand his companions and pay them compensation due to the political arbitrary detention. He did nothing. Lying first, then arrogance, and he did nothing. Indeed, he said on the podium of a television station a few days ago, that the International Investigation Committee found in Jamil al-Sayed on thirty million dollars. It is shameful to lie to this degree. If that were true, I should have been in prison and investigated. Can I be their hold on killing Prime Minister Hariri? Do you say that fluently because Muhammad Al-Hout said it before that? I challenge that the journalist who interviewed him took 15 or 20 million dollars from Riad Salameh. I am not defending, we lived in the state and we know it, that we are not like them and we are not like them no matter what they say, and if my son has 3 or 4 percent of shares in a certain place, does he say that he owns a bank?
They are lying to each other. This indicates what, from lying to falsehood to forgery to non-apology to arrogance, on what basis will Hariri establish a state? Basically, the world is people, and those who build the state are the people, not laws or texts. If a person finds reform, he finds reform even if there is no law. I challenge any of those around me to have a company or an interest in the state. So be whoever wants to be strong. And whose bank accounts are exposed, his accounts and his family’s accounts are frozen, and who proves in the end that he “did not see anything in his hands,” and you say they found thirty million dollars in his house? How do you want to be prime minister? I am not Jihad Arab, or Riad Salameh, or Muhammad al-Hout, or everyone around you, we are not like that. Whoever will sponsor a state must have a certificate of innocence before he comes. ”
MP Jihad Al-Samad
The President of the Republic, Deputy Jihad Al-Samad, read the following statement: “Yesterday I said that I am in a confusion between my political mind and my national conscience attached to the issues of my people. It requires overcoming the political disagreement, and because the task of any government is that its head and members are to restore confidence in Lebanon, the state. This will not be easy unless all political forces bypass their narrow interests and their illegal spoils.
With my complete conviction that the composition will not be different from the norms and experiences after Al-Taif, and because the drowned people cling to the ropes of air, no matter how mirages they are. For all these reasons, I decided to name Prime Minister Saad Hariri, wishing him success. ”
He was asked about the reason for naming, he said: “There is a great national responsibility and necessity to save the country, and my responsibility and conscience inevitably I have to go through this choice, and I hope that everyone will have a patriotic conscience and participate in saving this country.”
MP Jean Talouzian
President Aoun met with Representative Jean Talouzian, who considered that Lebanon is currently going through a difficult phase in its history, and that all Lebanese “are suffering from a crisis unlike anything they have seen in the history of Lebanon, and from here there is a consensus among everyone on their various religious and political affiliations that a government must be established. Salvation carries out reforms and is able to enjoy international support to lift Lebanon’s isolation and stop the ongoing collapse. From here, we must name a prime minister, and that is why I named Prime Minister Saad Hariri for more than one reason: the first is the inability to surpass the overwhelming majority of the Sunni community that he represents, and the second We need a prime minister and a government capable of breaking the isolation, and I wished for His Excellency the President that there would be a facilitation for the formation of the government, because it is not enough cooperation between the authorities in our democratic system without cooperation between the single authority, that is, the executive authority, and serious cooperation between the President of the Republic and the Prime Minister is in the interest of all the Lebanese. Officials should stop their complaints, starting today, and try to do something to rid the country of the current reality.”
Regarding his position with the Lebanese Forces bloc, he said: “There is a difference of opinion on the issue of naming Prime Minister Hariri, and this has nothing to do with my stay or my exit from the bloc, and we will talk about it later. I am not partisan, but within the bloc, and if there is a difference of opinion and they think that I should not be in the bloc, they are free.”
Strong Lebanon bloc
President Aoun received the Strong Lebanon bloc, and after the meeting, MP Gebran Bassil spoke on behalf of them, saying: “We participated as a constitutional and charter bloc in binding parliamentary consultations in response to the President’s call. The current position not to nominate anyone to head the government is known and announced before, because its position is with the government. This is the essence of the French initiative. A politically supported prime minister was chosen from his team, then his supporters violated a basic rule that was agreed to be politically supported and not named by one team. Circumstances to a single candidate, and since he is not a specialist, but rather a politician par excellence, we decided not to name anyone and not to name him.
Our position is political and not personal at all. Rather, the personal approach brings us closer and does not alienate us, and our position in the media has been transformed as if it is linked to a meeting or contact, and this is what we never proposed, rather it was invented from political and media fabrications to undermine us, and we were subjected to an extensive campaign of abuse that reached an extent of insulting our freedom by choosing whether or not to support a certain personality, otherwise accusing us of obstruction. This is a kind of unacceptable political intimidation, and the movement does not compromise its right to take the position it delegated to the people who elected its representatives. The FPM position is political and always stems from the issue of forming governments, from adopting one criteria, and this time we were before a government of specialists fully supported by the political forces, or another option with a government of politicians or technologists formed by the political forces. We are now in the second phase with the naming that will take place, and this is how the charter is at the basis of the formation.
We have never talked about the charter in the assignment, and if we had thought about that, we would have proposed boycotting consultations, which did not happen, and therefore there was no talk about de-constitutionalizing the consultations, and whoever did that is Prime Minister Hariri himself during the period prior to the consultations that PM Hassan Diab was appointed. He refused to be appointed without the support of the balanced Christian blocs. This does not mean that this mandate is tainted by weakness and lack of representation represented by the lack of numbers as a whole, and the absence of support from the major Christian components, and no one can overlook it, and whoever tries to do so is working to bring us back to the pre-2005 phase of the Syrian tutelage, which is something we will not accept.”
“ As for Prime Minister Hariri to be called, it is an understandable and accepted matter by the charter, even if it departs from the French initiative, and puts us before the rules of forming a charter in a techno-political government with a specific mission and deadline. We are talking about these rules during the writing stage, with the start of parliamentary consultations with the designated president, and we are waiting for him to inform us of his intentions in the standards of authorship and how they will be specific and unified with all parties and components, and then we will determine our position on the composition process. ”
Guarantee to the mountain bloc
After that, President Aoun met with the Guarantee of the Mountain bloc, represented by MP Mario Aoun, who said: “We are an integral part of the strong Lebanon bloc, and our Excellency informed us that Prime Minister Saad Hariri should not be nominated as prime minister.”
He was asked about the absence of MO Talal Arslan, and he replied: for Personal reasons.
Armenian Parliament Bloc
President Aoun received the Armenian Deputies bloc. Mp Agoub Pakradounian, read the following statement: “Today, in front of a battered country and a people losing hope, we must rise to the maximum limits of responsibility and perform our national duty to save the homeland and the citizen. We have been brought to a stage where there is nothing left in front of us except for the French initiative, and we have committed to the provisions of this initiative and expressed concerns about how to implement some of its provisions.
Now, while we are facing the responsibility to save the country, what is required is the formation of a rescue government as soon as possible. We call for an end to the preconditions and counter-conditions, and work to revive the country and restore the confidence of the citizen, and restore the confidence of the outside towards Lebanon. In light of the absence of other options, the Armenian Parliament bloc decided to nominate PM Saad Hariri to form the next government, wishing the designated PM to open up and extend a hand to all, to reach the formation of a comprehensive rescue government in cooperation with the parliamentary blocs, representing the ambition of the Lebanese people, especially the young generation. We are in a delicate stage that does not tolerate the luxury of waiting and narrow calculations. Prime Minister Saad Hariri should initiate and rush to open a fruitful dialogue to reach the rescue government and work with His Excellency the President of the Republic to achieve comprehensive reform at all levels. ”
In response to a question about reconciling their position with the position of MP Gebran Bassil, he said: “The agreement is complete between us, and we are part of the bloc and allies. There may be a difference of opinion sometimes, but there is no dispute.”
Development and Liberation Bloc
President Aoun received the Development and Liberation bloc headed by Speaker Nabih Berri, and MP Anwar Khalil spoke ion its behalf. He said: “We announce, in the name of the Parliamentary Development and Liberation Bloc headed by Speaker Nabih Berri, the nomination of Prime Minister Saad Hariri to form a salvation government as soon as possible, to be in peace. Its priorities are the implementation of the reform and rescue provisions contained in the French initiative, especially the fight against corruption, the implementation of all 54 laws issued in Parliament but not implemented, and the restoration of confidence in the state and its institutions from the Lebanese society and the Arab and international community, and reassurance that the country through unity and dialogue is capable, God willing, to make resurrection happen no matter how severe the crisis is.”
After that, President Aoun briefed Speaker Berri on the results of binding parliamentary consultations.
After the end of the parliamentary consultations, the Director General of the Presidency of the Republic, Dr. Antoine Choucair, read the commissioning statement, stating:
The General Directorate of the Presidency of the Republic issued the following statement: Pursuant to the provisions of Article 2 of Article 53 of the Constitution related to the nomination of the designated Prime Minister, and after that His Excellency the President of the Republic conducted binding parliamentary consultations today, Thursday, October 22, 2020, and after consulting with the Speaker of Parliament and briefing him on their official results, he summoned the PM Saad Hariri at 1:30 p.m. to assign him to form the government.
Dr. Choucair was asked about the number of votes Prime Minister Hariri got, and he replied: “Prime Minister Hariri got 65 votes, 53 deputies did not make anyone and he recorded the absence of two MPs.”
At 1:30 in the afternoon, Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri arrived at Baabda Palace, to join the meeting with President Aoun and Speaker Berri.
Before leaving Baabda Palace, Speaker Berri said in response to a question whether the task of forming a government will be easy? The atmosphere is the opposite of the pessimistic atmosphere existing in the country that affects us all. I tell you that the atmosphere is optimistic, especially between Presidents Aoun and Hariri, and in particular, between future movement and the Free Patriotic Movement.
Question: How long will the formation take?
He answered: “The fastest possible”
Statement of the assigned PM
After the meeting with the President of the Republic, Prime Minister Hariri made the following statement:
“His Excellency the President of the Republic graciously informed me, in the presence of the Speaker of the Parliament, of the result of the binding parliamentary consultations that led to my designation to form the new government. I thank my fellow MPs, especially those who honored me with the nomination to form a government of specialists from non-partisans, whose mission is to implement economic, financial and administrative reforms contained in the French initiative , in which the main blocs in Parliament pledged to support the government for its implementation.
I turn to the Lebanese who suffer from difficulties to the point of despair, that I am determined to abide by my promise made to them, to work to stop the collapse that threatens our economy, society and our security, and to rebuild what was destroyed by the terrible explosion of the port in Beirut, and that I will first focus on forming a government quickly, because time is running out, the opportunity for our beloved country is the only one and the last one. Thank you.”
Source: National News Agencyhttps://syrianewsgazette.com/president-aoun-on-the-day-of-binding-parliamentary-consultations-designating-pm-saad-hariri-to-form-new-government-by-a-majority-of-65-votes/General