BASSIL: Our hand is extended to all & we call for urgent consultations, bilaterally or collectively
(See translation in Arabic section)
Lebanon - MP Gebran Bassil, the head of the "Free Patriotic Movement", addressed in a press conference held today the "country's situation", saying: "The scene is disturbing: political void, the ruling system and collapse. A republic without a president means a body without a head. A government that lacks the confidence of Parliament and therefore of legitimacy. A government that lacks for an essential component, and therefore for the charter; taking the place of a president of the republic unconstitutionally, putting the president signature 3 times on the decree, replacing the president of the republic and issuing it without the signature of the ministers which is forgery. A helpless and truncated government ruling the country as if the situation is normal. A government that "do not step down unless it brings the president who they want." A system that controls the country and refuses to reform it. It rules politically through the arbitrariness of the constitution and laws; it rules financially through imperial circulars of the Central Bank in which it controls people’s money. The governor of the Central Bank is the ruler of the country financially. He is a gang leader, as described by the French Judiciary, a Launderer and embezzler of the state and Lebanese funds, pursued by the foreign and Lebanese judiciary, a fugitive from justice (he does not dare to go to the House of Representatives for fear of being arrested) manipulating the dollar up and down, to loot people's money with his system. Financial, economic, social, health, educational, institutional, judicial and legal collapse, and the fear that it will turn into a security collapse. Now they are threatening us with that and squeezing in to justify the arrival of the "candidate for security need".
"We are experiencing the manifestations of the dollar's collapse at LBP 60,000 and without a ceiling. The poverty line has risen. Gasoline is over a million. There is chaos in the pharmaceutical market. The educational sector is under threat. Negligence in administration, with employees and paperwork. Judges are complaining about each other and implementing political agendas. The army commander violates the laws of defense and public accountability. He takes by force the powers of the Minister of Defense, disposes of millions in a fund of private funds and army property. The Prime Minister issues illegal decisions, the latest of which is putting general directors to act. In addition to all this, the ruling system, began implementing its plan of exclusion and striking the partnership. To this day, there is neither external decision to blow up, nor an internal decision to fight. Security breaches due to the living situation are expected, but beware! Who guarantees? They play with the dollar, the judiciary system and the people to blow up the situation and throw away the European Investigation? The most difficult is a renewed immigration wave, which is the largest since 1915, leading to the exodus of the Lebanese and replacing them with the displaced and refugees. This is happening with the knowledge of the same countries that work to settle the displaced and give visas selectively to the Lebanese, as if they sort them according to their sects or abilities, and empty Lebanon of its energies – therefore adding human void to the presidential void. Thus, all of Lebanon is threatened, and not a team alone. Although there are people who are happy with the result, because "Bassil is losing"; Their calculations are wrong, as usual. Basil is not the one who loses as long as his cause is right and his political party (FPM) is backing him. The whole country loses. When the people are threatened with extinction, even if the land remains, the entity ends and the identity is lost. Despite all of this, there are those who say: It’s still early, why the rush? No, it is not early, we were too late to restore the state. The proponents of the theory of “Let the situation decay more, so that we can rebuild it from the beginning", they do not see that there are no people left for reconstruction. And the proponents of the project "Let the state disintegrate so we will be stronger than it and able to maintain our street", are on both sides, extending the period of emptiness to benefit from the state's absence. Extend the presidential vacuum to benefit from the State's absence. In short, without a president, there is no state, and without a president with a program, there is no solution. It is true that the priority is to elect the president, but a president election is not enough, and alone is not the solution. He needs a program. We called "presidential priorities". The president comes to implement it with the government and in cooperation with the parliament. This requires agreement and partnership, and without them, there is no horizon or solution."
In any case, Christians have a responsibility to agree among themselves, because by agreeing, they are able to realize their choice, as long as their choice is national. Here, I hold responsible those who refuse dialogue or reject the agreement outright. This refusal holds them responsible for presidential vacuum, weakening the position, and missing the right to good representation. Certainly, this position shall be legitimately represented, from and within it, and not allegedly represented. But in the event that this is not possible, as today, then at least it shall be supported by the powers that have representation... Bkerké remains responsible for rallying support, and rejecting any transgression of this effort", he added.
Basil stressed that it sounds "insane, at the national and political level, for anyone to think of electing a president without the Christians, and without an equally responsible patriotic stance for those who refuse to go beyond them, and rely on it to build a common and shared life in the heart of the mountain."
...We started communications with deputies and parliamentary blocs to hear their proposal and to agree with them on some names, on the basis of the relatively most appropriate, best able to implement the program and the most suitable to secure agreement on it without challenge. We extend our hand to everyone and we call for urgent consultation, bilaterally or collectively, in any form, so that there is agreement on a small and quick implementation program, and understanding on a mini-list of names to choose one of them, or at least to vote on it if we cannot narrow it down to one name. We extend an invitation to meet, initiate towards any collaborator and respond to any endeavour in this direction.
"The ruling system does not want to implement Taif, nor does it want decentralization, nor a civil state, nor a balanced partnership with a sectarian system... What do they want? I anticipate any misinterpretation and say we only want one Arab, Levantine, Mediterranean Lebanon with 10,452 square kilometers as opposed to the rhetoric of closure and the attempt to convince the Christians that the solution is through separation. We addressed this discourse a long time ago with all the believers in Greater Lebanon," the head of the FPM said.
And speaking of the "understanding", he said: "We wanted a national understanding with all the Lebanese, with the Future Movement, the Socialist Party, the Amal Movement, the Lebanese Forces, the Phalanges (or Kataeb party), and others. The party that responded most to us was Hezbollah, and we worked with it on an understanding based on 3 pillars: defense strategy, state-building, and balanced partnership. The understanding was based on a 3-legged ladder, and no one was able to shake it, after which the state-building pillar fall to pieces, and the ladder began to shake and remained standing on two legs, but rested on a wall that is national unity and the need to preserve it, therefore he stood firm. In the era of President Aoun, the state-building pillar was cut off, immediately after the end of his term, the partnership pillar began to shake; if the partnership was cut off, the ladder would remain standing on one leg and leaning on the wall; this matter would inevitably lead to its downfall...
Bassil stressed that there is no State without the judiciary system, without justice, and without accountability. "I want to talk about truth and justice in relation of the port and stolen money."
In the port, we do not care about any judge, we are not with or against anyone, we are concerned about the continuation of the investigation and the issuance of the indictment to transfer the file to the Judicial Council. The investigation should not be limited to job negligence, without extending to nitrates and bombing - the file has three dimensions, and the focus is on one dimension with the employees. We are not with the international judiciary, but I said previously that if the Lebanese judiciary fails, there will be nothing left for the families of the victims, except for the external judiciary, and this is a slap in the face to Lebanon.
“As for the stolen money, it has become known and proven by the European and Lebanese judiciary that Riad Salameh committed several financial crimes, including laundering, embezzlement and smuggling of funds abroad with the cooperation of some banks. We made a great effort to prove these facts and succeeded in some of them, and we worked to recover these funds. We moved in the street, submitted news to the judiciary, submitted a law to recover this money and applied for a parliamentary investigation committee. We did not succeed because he has the protection of the system that refuses to pass laws and move files in the judiciary, except for some rebellious and uninvolved judges," He added.
"On our own (as FPM), we try to communicate with everyone, opponents and friends, to end the political void, elect a president and a rescue program. On our own, we have a presidential priority paper, a complete vision for developing the system, an economic and financial project, an energy, oil, gas, water, dams plan, and multiple sectoral plans. On our own, we have a Movement in which there is room for freedom and democracy, even if some from the inside benefited from it to differentiate themselves, or from the outside, to target us."