Lebanon News

Lebanon's Arabic press digest - Oct. 26, 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.


Jumblatt protects his position by breaking alliances ... Hariri accuses him of lying

The Lebanese witnessed Thursday a new, live, on-air chapter of domestic political conflict but this time it was not between the March 14 and 8 coalitions but between the leader of the opposition Saad Hariri and the leader of the "centrists" Walid Jumblatt.

At the end of the show, a little bit before midnight, it seemed that the March 14 coalition was not able to tolerate centrists like the Druze leader who did not spare the March 8 group of his criticism but chose to situate himself under President Michel Sleiman's umbrella.

Jumblatt decided to be frank in his interview with Marcel Ghanem, revealing details pertaining to the many rounds of discussion between him and the opposition group when the head of the Information Branch Maj. Gen. Wissam al-Hasan was assassinated.

He also revealed information he has about the international community's stance with regards to changing the government and its disassociation policy.


FBI delegation inspected the site where martyr Hasan was assassinated

Today is Eid al-Adha but the Eid is not in the air after Maj. Gen. Wissam al-Hasan sacrificed himself for Lebanon to protect the security of Lebanese and foil attempts to fuel sectarian strife planned by Lebanon's enemies.

Saad Hariri said that "this terrorist crime that led to the death of innocent victims and destruction of citizens' houses and property in Ashrafieh deprived the Lebanese of the usual joy of Eid and brought them back to the climate of fear over a collapse in the country’s security and the ghost of political assassinations."

He voiced his sorrow and pain because the Eid coincided with Hasan’s assassination. Hariri said that such a crime would not "deter us from confronting terrorist plans with all our might to consecrate the project of state building with its legitimate security and military institutions.”

Meanwhile, the FBI delegation arrived in Beirut Thursday night and began its work at the crime scene by taking fingerprints and collecting evidence for analysis amid heavy security measures. Judge Hatem Made said that the "U.S. team's task is to offer technical assistance to Lebanese authorities."


Live dispute shakes Hariri-Jumblatt relations

A week after the passing of the Ashrafieh explosion and the assassination of Maj. Gen. Wissam al-Hasan, the political stances are moving further toward an open crisis amid a deadlock facing the president’s efforts to hold a Dialogue session.

New developments surfaced with regard to the political crisis in the country with Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea making the accusation that Hezbollah executed Hasan's assassination according to Iranian-Syrian plans. The accusation prompted a response from Hezbollah, who in turn accused Geagea of inciting sectarian strife. In addition, the stance of Walid Jumblatt, head of the Progressive Socialist Party, deepened the political and government crisis when he committed to the Cabinet and placed conditions for a national unity government, revealing that former Prime Minister Saad Hariri had asked him to resign [from the present government] but that he refused.

Former Prime Minister Fouad Siniora returned to Beirut Thursday along with a Future Movement delegation after a long meeting with Hariri there.





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