BEIRUT: Marada Movement leader Sleiman Frangieh's approach to all issues raised during his wide-ranging television interview Thursday night was realistic and frank, Progressive Socialist Party leader MP Walid Jumblatt said Friday.
"His approach was realistic, frank and practical away from slogans made by some philosophical politicians," Jumblatt said in a tweet, praising the newly declared candidate.
The PSP leader, who staunchly backs Frangieh's presidential bid to end the 19-month-long vacuum at the state's top post, reiterated "the weird and strange agreement between opposites to obstruct the elections harms [Lebanon's] stability, institutions and economy."
He described the mixing in stances between March 8 and 14 parties as "political tampering."
Jumblatt criticized over the weekend the deal between the so-called “resistance front”, Hezbollah and Free Patriotic Movement, and the Lebanese Forces to impede Frangieh’s nomination.
The Marada leader officially declared during his interview with Kalam Ennas that he was a candidate for Lebanon's presidency, but denied he was splitting from his longtime ally Michel Aoun.
It was the first time Frangieh explicitly acknowledged that he was seeking the presidency since he emerged as a potential candidate following a secret meeting with Future Movement leader Saad Hariri in Paris last month.
He emphasized that he was not competing with his ally Change and Reform bloc leader MP Michel Aoun, but that his candidacy simply offered a new opportunity to end the presidential crisis. Aoun has not spoken publicly since Frangieh emerged as a potential candidate, stirring speculation of tensions between the two. He has long been the March 8 presidential candidate, supported by Hezbollah.