BEIRUT: President Michel Sleiman said in Uruguay that a comprehensive, final settlement was required to end the Middle East crisis, according to his office Saturday.
“We should seek to find a comprehensive solution to the Middle East crisis on the basis of legitimate and international resolutions, the Madrid Conference as well as the Arab peace initiative adopted in Beirut in 2002,” Sleiman said following a meeting with his Uruguayan counterpart President Jose Mujica.
Sleiman kicked off a two-day visit to Uruguay Friday after wrapping up his visit to Argentina.
The president arrived at 8:30 p.m. (Beirut time) at Uruguay’s Executive Tower where he held a meeting with Mujica in the presence of Lebanese and Uruguayan diplomats.
According to the president’s statement, discussions between the two leaders stressed the importance of strengthening ties between Lebanon and Uruguay, particularly at the economic level.
Both leaders also agreed on the need to cooperate in international forums and support “righteous and fair causes.”
Sleiman also visited the Legislative Palace in the Uruguayan capital of Montevideo, where he was received by Uruguayan Vice President Danilo Astori.
Speaking from the Palace, Sleiman hailed Uruguayan efforts to build a modern state that respects the law and supports justice.
“I hope we can develop cooperation between the Lebanese and Uruguayan people as well as work together all over the world to establish social justice and true democracy,” Sleiman said.
The Lebanese leaser kicked off his tour of Latin America Monday in the Peruvian capital of Lima, where he headed the Arab delegation at the South American-Arab Countries summit.
He then headed to Argentina, where Lebanese Ambassador Hisham Hamdan and a crowd of Argentineans of Lebanese origin hosted a ceremony in the capital in his honor.
“Lebanon paid a big price for the values of democracy and freedom, and you [Argentinean-Lebanese] know this very well because your ancestors left Lebanon in search for freedom and dignity,” Sleiman said in the speech in Buenos Aires.
Sleiman also said that the developments in the Arab world and the wave of upheavals that resulted in democratic change in the region would positively affect Lebanon.