Lebanon News

Aoun: Make army capable before disarming Hezbollah

In this picture released by the Free Patriotic Movement media office, FPM leader Michel Aoun speaks during the weekly meeting of his bloc in Rabieh, Lebanon, Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2011. (Charbel Nakhoul/The Daily Star, HO)

BEIRUT: Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun said Tuesday that Hezbollah would only hand over its weapons if the Lebanese Army becomes capable of protecting the country.

“First give Lebanon security and then ask for the disarmament of Hezbollah,” said Aoun in response to calls from March 14 officials to put Hezbollah’s arms as the No. 1 item on any new national dialogue session.

Following his weekly meeting of the Change and Reform bloc in Rabieh, Aoun said that the army should first be properly equipped so that Hezbollah would lay down its arms.

Commenting on the possible return of former Prime Minister Saad Hariri to Beirut, Aoun said that another “one-way” awaits Hariri if he returns.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on November 09, 2011, on page 2.




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