BEIRUT: Lebanon’s Cabinet approved its policy statement Friday following hours-long deliberations over the disputed resistance clause, averting Prime Minister Tammam Salam’s resignation.
The rival groups agreed to mention “the right of Lebanese citizens to resist Israel, repulse its attacks and recover occupied territory” affirming the responsibility of the state to liberate its land.
The Kataeb Party'e three ministers and Justice Minister Ashraf Rifi registered their reservations over the formula, which broke the four-week deadlock over the policy statement.
While the March 14 coalition insisted on putting the resistance under the authority of the state, the March 8 group demanded that the policy statement affirm the right of resistance in a formula, effectively legitimizing Hezbollah’s arsenal.
Salam had warned that he would submit his resignation if rivals group failed to agree on a policy statement.
The 24-member Cabinet needed to agree on a policy statement before March 17 in order to be granted Parliament's vote of confidence and effectively begin its work.