Lebanon News

PSP decries burning of Russian flag during anti-Assad rally

Druze leader Walid Jumblatt carries a paper reading in Arabic: " Homs" during a sit-in against the Syrian regime in Beirut, Lebanon, Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2012. (The Daily Star/Hasan Shaaban)

BEIRUT: The Progressive Socialist Party denounced Thursday the burning of Russian flags during a rally in solidarity with the Syrian uprising that was attended by PSP head MP Walid Jumblatt.

“The PSP declares its rejection and condemnation of what happened during the solidarity sit-in ... on Wednesday and [the actions of] those who burned Russian flags after PSP chief Walid Jumblatt left the area,” a statement by the party said.

“The party would like to stress that these acts and [this] behavior do not fit with the primary aims of the movement, which seeks to send a message of solidarity to the Syrian people, no more and no less,” it added.

During Wednesday’s vigil at the Samir Kassir memorial garden in Downtown Beirut, some activists burned Russian and Chinese flags in anger at Beijing and Moscow’s veto at the United Nations Security Council two weeks ago of a draft proposal urging President Bashar Assad to step down.

Jumblatt, his wife Noura as well as a PSP delegation and members of the Democratic Renewal Movement took part in the visit.

As a sign of support, Jumblatt, who stressed he was at the rally as a citizen and not a politician, lit a candle in honor of the victims of the unrest in Lebanon’s neighbor.

“Leave,” said the PSP leader, addressing Assad, who has accused Syrian demonstrators of conspiring with foreign governments against the regime.

The U.N. estimates over 5,400 Syrians, mostly civilians, have been in killed in the crackdown by Damascus since the uprising in Syrian began in mid-March 2011.





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