Christian leader Michel Aoun greets his supporters as he arrives to deliver a speech during a rally near the empty presidential palace in the Beirut suburb of Baabda, Lebanon, Sunday, Oct. 11, 2015. (AP Photo/Hassan Ammar)
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MP Michel Aoun said Tuesday his two ministers would not return to the Cabinet until a new Army commander and a new military council are appointed, in a tough stance likely to throw the already divided government into further disarray.The leader of the Free Patriotic Movement also said he has the right to name a new Army commander because he heads the largest Christian bloc in Parliament. We represent the Christian majority and we have the right to name an Army commander," Aoun said in an interview with OTV, which is affiliated with the FPM.He insisted that the military appointments and the naming of a new Army commander are essential for the FPM's two ministers to attend Cabinet sessions. Aoun lashed out at Defense Minister Samir Moqbel for extending the terms of top Army brass, including Kahwagi's term.Aoun has been lobbying for Roukoz, the head of the Army Commando Regiment who is due to retire on Oct. 15, to be appointed Army commander.Aoun also reiterated that he viewed Parliament as illegitimate since it had twice voted to extend its own term, effectively canceling the 2013 elections.
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