BEIRUT: Cardinal Beshara Rai slammed Lebanon’s politicians Thursday, urging them to take part in National Dialogue and address the issue of Syrian refugees coming to the country, the National News Agency reported.
“Shame on you not to attend the Dialogue table,” said Rai. “It is a shame on officials not to attend Dialogue and address the Syrian refugee case, the biggest national and humanitarian issue we are facing today,” he added.
Over 160,000 Syrian refugees have arrived in Lebanon since the start of violence in neighboring Syria.
Lebanon’s Cabinet has been seeking international help to support the refugees the country is hosting.
Rai also slammed politicians for failing to reach an agreement over a new law for the coming 2013 parliamentary elections.
“It will be such a shame if the political powers in Lebanon fail to reach an electoral law that meets with the Lebanese people’s aspirations,” said Rai.
The cardinal urged politicians to place Lebanon’s interests first and step out of narrow sectarian calculations.
“Each of us should think about what he can offer his country rather than what he can get,” said Rai.
Lebanese politicians are yet to agree over a new law for the elections scheduled to take place in June.
A parliamentary subcommittee discussing a new law for the elections is set to resume meetings on Jan. 8.
According to the cardinal, the current situation in the country has been triggered by a plot targeting the Middle East and aiming to weaken it.
“There is a scheme to use the Middle East rather than build it, and to make the Arab World poor,” said Rai.
“Lebanon should stay away from what is going on and be a neutral country and a nation of diversity,” the cardinal added.