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Lebanon’s ‘Deep Wound’ Needs Time to Heal – Hariri | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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London, Asharq Al-Awsat- Head of the Lebanese Future Party, Saad al-Hariri has asserted that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia played a principal role in reaching the Doha agreement and recalled that some Arab countries opposed intervention in Lebanon on the basis that what was happening there “was an internal affair.” Speaking by telephone to Asharq Al-Awsat in London, he added that the awareness of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and Egypt of the consequences of what had happened in Beirut led to reaching this solution.

Al-Hariri told Asharq Al-Awsat that, “When invitations were sent to the Arab foreign ministers’ conference, there were countries which opposed holding it on the basis that what was happening as an internal affair. But the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia called for the conference because it perceived the danger which could result from Lebanon’s events. Thank God that we reached the results we have reached.”

Al-Hariri pointed out that “the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia was always the sponsor of every Lebanese accord. It pledged, especially the custodian of the Two Holy Mosques that the kingdom would be by the side of the Lebanese in any agreement they might reach and would back this agreement.”

Asked the reason for the majority’s agreement to give the opposition the blocking third in the government (that is, enough seats which enable them to stop any draft bill) after having refused to do so in the past, Al-Hariri said, “There was at the beginning a refusal on our part to give them the blocking third because of the international tribunal, which was the reason why they left the government. Had we given them the blocking third at the time, then there would not have been an international tribunal or judges or an extension of another year to the international investigation commission.” Al-Hariri, who seemed satisfied with the agreement that was reached, warned that the deep wound in Beirut needs time to heal, saying this agreement is the beginning and there are many other things that need to be dealt with. He said, “There is a deep wound in Lebanon and no one should think that this wound was healed today. There is a deep wound which needs treatment and several things should happen so that it can be treated because what happened was unacceptable.”

Al-Hariri went on to say, “We warned of sedition in Lebanon. This agreement is the start of an attempt to heal the wound. I hope that the parties are sincere and I am confident that with the presence of witnesses, the Arab League, and ministers the agreement reached will be translated.” He stressed that the agreement reconsolidated the Lebanese Republic since there were “fears of an attack on Al-Taif agreement” and said, “Today, the Lebanese Republic was reconsolidated. There was one stage when we were apprehensive and asking where was the country heading: No president of the republic and a government that the opposition was suspicious of. There was an attack on Al-Taif and today that agreement was reconsolidated.” He stressed that “many things will change after electing the president next Sunday”, adding that a lengthy dialogue would be launched about Hezbollah’s weapons before drafting the government statement and deciding how this weapon would be dealt with (the last government statement legitimatized the “resistance” work and Hezbollah’s weapon) and pointed out that the dialogue about the weapon started in Doha.