Al-Rahi Urges Hariri to ‘Take Initiative’, Submit ‘Updated Line-Up’


Maronite Patriarch Beshara al-Rahi on Sunday called on Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri to “take initiative” and submit an “updated” draft cabinet line-up to President Michel Aoun “as soon as possible.”

Hariri must agree with Aoun on “the structure, portfolios and names based on the standards of a government of nonpartisan specialists in which no party enjoys hegemony,” al-Rahi added in his Pentecost Sunday sermon.

“Should they fail to agree, let them draw lessons and take a brave stance that allows for a new formation process,” the patriarch added.

His remarks come a day after a parliament duel between Hariri and Free Patriotic Movement chief MP Jebran Bassil, Aoun’s son-in-law, in which the two parties held onto their conflicting stances.

Separately, al-Rahi voiced regret over “the clash on the Nahr el-Kalb highway between some Lebanese and displaced Syrians heading to the presidential vote ballot boxes.”

“It was caused by the provocation of the sentiments of the Lebanese in an area full of martyrs who fell in battles with the Syrian army, and at a time the fate of the file of the detainees in Syrian prisons is still unknown,” the patriarch noted.

He added that “it is unacceptable for the displaced Syrians to remain here pending a complete political solutions for the Syrian crisis.”



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