Lebanon News

Lebanon's Arabic press digest - Nov. 25, 2012

Lebanon's Arabic press digest.

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


Rai receives rank of cardinal from pope

Attention was directed at The Vatican Saturday, where the ceremony to promote Beshara Rai to cardinal by Pope Benedict XVI was held. Benedict also gave Rai the highest cardinal rank.

The ceremony was held at St. Peter’s Basilica in the presence of President Michel Sleiman and his wife along with an official Lebanese delegation as well as March 14 and March 14 delegations.

The number of Lebanese who attended the ceremony was close to 1,500. Among them were those who traveled to Rome especially for the occasion.

However, the ceremony did not divert attention away from the visit by Iran's Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani whose Beirut tour only included a meeting with Speaker Nabih Berri and Hezbollah chief Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah as well as Palestinian factions.

Al-Mustaqbal obtained information that the president was very upset about Iranian stances with regard to Lebanon, particularly by remarks Larijani made while in Beirut Saturday, including some harsh criticism of Arab countries.

The remarks contradicted the Baabda Declaration, which stipulates that Lebanon should be distant from regional conflicts.


A cardinal's day at The Vatican breaks through the crisis

Pope Benedict XVI appointed Saturday six cardinals from all over the world to affirm the Church's global culture, but Beshara Rai’s appointment had a religious-national dimension which was reflected by the large political, religious and popular presence at the ceremony.

The event was a national one and was attended by President Michel Sleiman as well as figures from different political parties, in a scene that appeared contradictory to the [local] internal situation [in Lebanon] which is drowning in a political crisis.

Saturday's scene encouraged Sleiman to make some remarks during an honorary luncheon during which Rai was awarded the Cedars Medal.

Sleiman urged everyone to "attend the Dialogue [session] he is holding on Nov. 29 and for them to come with an open heart and to put behind them all the wagers whether on the Syrian opposition or the Syrian regime."


A new cardinal from Lebanon ... pope promotes Beshara Rai to cardinal

A new cardinal was appointed Saturday. That person was Beshara Rai. He was given the rank of cardinal by Pope Benedict XVI at a ceremony at St. Peter’s Basilica. Five other cardinals joined the College of Princes in order to assist the pope and serve the Church.

Rai was given the highest rank of cardinals in the presence of President Michel Sleiman and his wife along with a representative of the government and some 1,500 Lebanese representing the March 14 and March 8 coalitions.

A Hezbollah delegation also attended the ceremony, which included MP Ali Fayyad and Ghaleb bu Zaynab.

Maronite delegations attended the ceremony from all over the world: Iraq, Egypt, Latin countries, European ones and Australia.

During a ceremony Sleiman urged everyone to attend the Nov. 29 National Dialogue session with an open heart while Rai thanked the president for his efforts to preserve independence.





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