Lebanon News

Lebanon's Arabic press digest - Aug 31, 2012

Lebanon's Arabic press digest.

Following are summaries of some of the main stories in a selection of Lebanese newspapers Friday. The Daily Star cannot vouch for the accuracy of these reports.


Khamenei warns against transporting regional problems to Lebanon

The upcoming Cabinet session will test its credibility in dealing with the issue of oil exploration amid the difference between its components regarding the Foreign Ministry’s report on the Special Economic Zone. Meanwhile, the countdown begins to appoint members of the oil committee.

The highlight of diplomatic action Thursday was President Michel Sleiman’s participation in the 16th Non-aligned Movement summit in the Iranian capital and his meeting with Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei. The latter warned during the meeting that some foreign parties are trying to “transport some of the problems in regional countries to Lebanon,” noting that the parties and sects of Lebanon “can foil these movement via the resistance party.”


Case of kidnapped gets mechanism for applying [political pressure]

The international day for victims of enforced disappearance drew most of the domestic attention, raising the general issue of those kidnapped and particularly those detained in Syrian prisons following the return to Lebanon of a detainee, Yacoub Shamoun, after 27 years of captivity in Syria.

Given the stances and action by committees and bodies concerned with this case, it appeared that there is momentum for establishing the National Commission to resolve the case of victims of enforced disappearance according to the draft law presented by Justice Minister Shakib Qortbawi.

This legislative move should be met with exceptional efforts, locally and internationally, following efforts by some of the bodies to prove that there are detainees alive in Syrian prisons.


An international phenomenon in Tehran

The summit in Iran achieved great success, bringing together countries in Iran at a time when these countries work on fighting Iran and isolating it from the world. And so the world came to Iran. If the summit had not been a major international event, Jeffrey Feltman, who is known for his animosity toward Hezbollah and Iran, would not have come.

And for the first time since 1979 and following severed ties between Iran and Egypt, Ahmadinajad met with Egyptian President Mohammad Mursi; a decision was made to resume ties between the countries and strengthen coordination between Egypt and Iran.

The second highlight of the event was Mursi's speech, in which he attacked the Syrian regime, prompting the Syrian delegation to leave the hall.

The third highlight was President Michel Sleiman's comments that he supports all security forces and that no one should interpret his remarks as supporting one group over the other. [According to Sleiman,] in order to preserve the prestige of the Lebanese state, support should not be withdrawn from Maj. Gen. Ashraf Rifi and Brig. Gen. Wisam Hasan. The reason for [such remarks] is that the president and the prime minister regretted receiving Rifi and Hasan following the arrest of Michel Samaha, according to information obtained by Ad-Diyar.


Kahwagi: Army capable of severely hitting gunmen

The commander of the Army addressed the political class regarding its way of dealing with the military institution, rejecting blackmail. He also specified the local goals of his military plan, while Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri voiced his own stances regarding domestic issues Friday.

Strongly worded statements were made by Gen. Jean Kahwagi concerning the campaigns against the Army. He affirmed that the Army will not allow any political party to blackmail it on any issues. It will also not allow any party to make it seem to be in support of one party or another.

Kahwagi also said that the Army will no longer be silenced when targeted verbally or physically.





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