BEIRUT: The Future parliamentary bloc said Wednesday life in Lebanon will only return to normal when Hezbollah withdraws from Syria, demanding the inclusion of the Baabda Declaration in the ministerial statement of the upcoming Cabinet.
The bloc also said it was necessary for the principle of rotating ministerial portfolios based on sect and party to be adopted in the upcoming government and future ones, a day after MP Michel Aoun rejected such a demand.
“It has become clear now that normal national life in Lebanon cannot be attained if Hezbollah carries on in Syria with such a tragic and destructive unrestrictive [manner] and continues to violate national consensus and covenant,” the bloc said in a statement, after its weekly meeting.
“It has become necessary for all the Lebanese to resort to the state and respect the principle of national partnership, including a full commitment to the disassociation policy which entails Hezbollah's withdrawal from the fighting in Syria,” it added.
The bloc has blamed Hezbollah’s intervention in Syria for the series of car bomb attacks in Beirut’s southern suburbs and last week’s bombing in the northeastern town of Hermel, saying the attacks are the result of the group’s military involvement alongside the Damascus regime.
Condemning Tuesday’s suspected suicide car bomb in the Beirut southern suburb of Haret Hreik that killed four people, the bloc called for a “thorough and transparent investigation in all terrorist attacks that are against humanity.”
“The bloc stresses on its stance that Lebanon can no longer tolerate the repercussions of the Syrian crisis,” it added.
The Future bloc headed by MP Fouad Siniora also urged the government to implement a plan that included the deployment of the Lebanese Army and internal Security Forces along the Lebanese border with the help of U.N. Interim Forces in Lebanon to fully control the border.
Such border measures, the bloc said, would prevent violations and the infiltration of fighters between Lebanon and Syria “to prevent Lebanon the crises caused by Hezbollah’s fighting there.”
Most of the car bombs in Beirut’s southern suburbs, where Hezbollah enjoys broad support, have been claimed by radical rebel groups in Syria in retaliation to the resistance party’s presence there.
The bloc also commented on the ongoing process of forming a new government that has recently seen a breakthrough in the 10-month political deadlock, reiterating their refusal to include Hezbollah’s defense formula in the upcoming ministerial statement.
Head of the Future Movement former PM Saad Hariri has said he was willing to join a Cabinet with the Hezbollah-led March 8 group after his party’s demands were met.
“Our stance with regards to the new government is driven by our outright opposition to any veto power and the inclusion of the tripartite formula of ‘the people, the army and the resistance’ which was used to violate the state, the law and the institutions,” the bloc said.
Hezbollah has said that such a formula is the only means capable of protecting Lebanon from Israeli aggression. But its rivals in the March 14 group argue Hezbollah’s fighting in Syria invalidated the formula.
The government's policy statement, the bloc said, should stress that Israel is the primary enemy of the Lebanese “who are committed to U.N. Security Council Resolution 1701.”
"It is necessary that the policy statement include a clear commitment to the Baabda Declaration with all its items in addition to commitment to the rotation of ministerial portfolios that should be adopted by this government and future ones,” it added.
“[Our] agreement to participate in the next Cabinet concurs with a full commitment to the alliance and unity of the March 14 coalition since the reasons that unite this coalition supersede any passing political array,” the bloc said.