Lebanon News

Hezbollah rules out unrest in Lebanon

Lebanon's Hezbollah deputy Sheikh Naim Qassem speaks during an interview with Reuters at his office in Beirut's suburbs, February 28, 2012. (REUTERS/ Sharif Karim)

BEIRUT: Hezbollah has ruled out the possibility that Lebanon might undergo violent unrest if the political crisis in the country worsens.

“There are no signs on the ground or in the political arena that unrest at the security level is likely to prevail because stability is in everybody’s interest and instability hurts everyone,” Hezbollah’s number two Sheikh Naim Qassem said in remarks published Wednesday.

“I don’t think the political crisis, even if it dragged on, will have security repercussions,” Qassem told the Kuwaiti daily Al-Qabas, stressing Hezbollah’s concerns about Lebanon’s stability.

Caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati announced his government's resignation last month.

Qassem said Mikati’s resignation came as no surprise to Hezbollah.

While he hoped that the resignation would open the door to a new agreement, Qassem quickly acknowledged that “all the solutions and options brought forward are complex and don’t pave the way for the launch of an effective government.”

Qassem sounded downbeat on the new Cabinet “which if formed,” he said “is going to be a crisis-management government and a time waster.”

In response to a question, Hezbollah’s second-in-command said his party has yet to make a final decision on the name of the prime minister-designate.

“The issue is carefully being examined to spare the country any peril,” Qassem said.

He said Hezbollah would not “abandon” their Christian ally, Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun.

“Our alliance with him [Aoun] is strategic and firm,” Qassem said.

“We share similar visions on many sensitive and vital issues in the country.”





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