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Lebanon: ‘Consultative Meeting’ Approves Government’s Plan Of Action | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Consultative meeting of Lebanese political powers held at the presidential palace in Baabda on June 22. (NNA)

Beirut – A consultative meeting chaired by Lebanese President Michel Aoun on Thursday at the presidential palace in Baabda gathered heads of the political parties participating in the current government and was capable to adopt the plan of action for the cabinet’s economic and reformist items.

Most importantly, in the statement prepared earlier by Aoun and later approved at the meeting, is the item which stressed that “Lebanon requires us to agree on the National Charter document and maintain our pluralistic system for a full transition to the comprehensive civil state, in what it includes of parity (…), up to the formation of a national commission for the abolition of sectarianism.”

Participants in the meeting also stressed the need for administrative decentralization, and announced the rejection or resettlement and naturalization of any group, according to the statement.

However, head of the Lebanese Forces party Samir Geagea noted his reservation on the first item related to the establishment of a national commission for the abolition of sectarianism.

“During his remarks at the meeting, Geagea said the timing for suggesting such a commission was not suitable. There is a need to protect Lebanon’s current unique and diverse structure and spare the country the woes of wars that surround us,” sources from his party told the Markzia news agency.

The sources said a dispute emerged between Geagea and Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs, Ali Kanso when the latter suggested that Lebanon and Syria’s government should work together on the issue of Syrian refugees and their return home. Geagea stressed there will be “no cooperation between the two governments.”

At the economic level, the consultative meeting said that “Lebanon, which is economically sound, needs to implement a comprehensive economic plan, which will generate the State budget, secure economic growth, create jobs and promote balanced development.” It also called for the revival of the Economic and Social Council as soon as possible.

Conferees also urged the government to “implement the economic plan to invest in the offshore petroleum wealth and complete its legal frameworks, speed up the provision of fast communications at the lowest prices and adopt transparency as the first criterion of work in our institutions.”