BEIRUT

Lebanon News

Lebanon must distance itself from regional conflicts

  • Labor Minister Sejaan Azzi speaks during a press conference at the Ministry in Beirut, Monday, Feb. 17, 2014. (The Daily Star/Mohammad Azakir)

BEIRUT: Labor Minister, Sejaan Azzi, calls on the international community to keep pressuring Lebanon to distance itself from regional conflicts.

“My first call for you dear colleagues is to convince battling groups in the Middle East to keep Lebanon away from their conflicts,” Azzi said, speaking at the Geneva International Labor Conference while addressing participants from over 180 Arab and foreign countries.

“Lebanon’s neutrality is essential to its existence,” he added.

He said that regional conflicts are influencing the country, obstructing its parliamentary and presidential elections, and damaging the constitution.

“ Lebanon is wounded, it is bleeding, its latest wound is the failure of Parliament to elect a new president. Do you know any country in the world without a president? Without a head?” he said.

“These conflicts in the east and the west are pressuring the country, obstructing the election and threatening the unity of Lebanon and its constitution,” he added.

The minister also appealed for the international community to help Lebanon address the crisis of the Syrian refugees’ influx to the country.

He indicated Lebanon is already hosting Palestinians “waiting for Israel to release their right for return to their country” and is now also bearing the consequences of “the Syrian tragedy.”

 
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