Syria’s Mufti Sheikh Ahmed Badreddine Hassoun on Friday called on the Lebanese politicians to visit his country similar to Syrians’ move towards Lebanon during its war, explaining that this is what “prevented partition”.
“Lebanese politicians should learn from Maronite Patriarch Beshara al-Rahi’s step,” Hassoun said in an interview with al-Mayadeen television, expressing that he had wished if Grand Mufti Mohammed Rashid Qabbani was among the first travelers to his country.
Al-Rahi made a two-day visit to Damascus on Saturday – the first by a Maronite patriarch since Syrian and Lebanese independence in 1943 – during which he participated in the enthronement of Greek Orthodox leader Youhanna X Yazigi.
“Some local newspapers had threatened to move against my visit to Lebanon,” he revealed, stressing that “he will be present in the country whenever he desires”.
Hassoun also accused the Lebanese Forces of “killing of his brother in Lebanon”.
Regarding the ongoing war in Syria, he said it was fueled by “callers for jihad that long for strife in the country”, adding that they are “responsible for every ounce of blood shed during the conflict”.
He noted: “People do not want President Bashar Assad to step down”.
The Mufti urged Christians to refrain from leaving the country, explaining that this would give a reason for the establishment of a religious state.
“Syria will not be divided and it will continue to exist with all its sects and factions,” he confirmed.
Hassoun revealed that he was asked by official, Islamic and financial figures to leave Syria and announce his defection at the beginning of the last holy month of Ramadan.