The head of Hezbollah’s parliamentary bloc, MP Mohammad Raad, said Hezbollah was still cautious despite the vast progress in the presidential crisis.
“Today we are advancing forward on the internal level, but we are advancing cautiously because we feel that a lot of politics are interfering in the field,” he said. “Therefore, we will not be fooled by the statements of officials or their ambitions.”
Speaking at a ceremony in the southern village of Beit Lif, he said it was “better to arrive late than not to arrive at all.”
On the other hand a Hezbollah minister said Sunday the party would facilitate the formation of a new Cabinet after Monday’s presidential election . “We will not place any conditions on the president or the Cabinet,” Industry Minister Hussein Hajj Hasan said in a statement. “We will put our hand with the new … president and Cabinet. What are important is the economy and the livelihood of people.”
But Kuwaiti newspaper al Seyasah reported that Hezbollah is going to back Speaker Nabh Berri’s excessive demands for joining the cabinet . Berri reportedly is insisting on controlling 4 key ministries , including Finance, Energy, Public works and a newly formed ministry of oil .
Raad did stress that the relationship between Hezbollah and the Amal Movement remains strong despite their current differences over the presidential election
The remarks came on the eve of Parliament’s anticipated election of Free Patriotic Movement founder MP Michel Aoun following 29 months of presidential vacancy.
Aoun is supported by former Prime Minister Saad Hariri while the Amal Movement supports Marada Movement head MP Sleiman Frangieh.
“The complete and ongoing understanding between … Hezbollah and the Amal Movement in dealing with development is aimed at maintaining the gains for our … people,” Raad said. “So that what we have achieved is not infringed upon … although our roads might differ … we will meet in the [place] that achieves the dreams and ambitions of our people.”
Change and Reform bloc MP Ibrahim Kanaan urged foreign powers to accept the agreement over Aoun’s presidency, insisting that he will be a truly Lebanese head of state.
“What is required is that the outside powers bless this agreement that has occurred between Lebanese for the first time in decades. … Aoun is the first 100 percent Lebanese president,” Kanaan said in an interview on Voice of Lebanon radio (93.3). “Lebanon was on the verge of collapse and disintegration. … It is important that the person who is most representative of the constituents attain the presidency. The election of … Aoun is the only solution to maintain the system and the constitution.”
Kanaan said that as president, Aoun will work to build good ties with all political powers and will seek to distance Lebanon from the affairs of regional states and their conflicts. “He will try to find a middle ground in the disputes between different sides and political factions concerning many issues,” he said.
Meanwhile, Future MP Mohammad Kabbara called on unity within party ranks. “The more the party is unified and steadfast, the easier the session to elect a president [will be] and the easier the parliamentary consultations to elect a prime minister will be,” he said in a Twitter post. “Hariri told the MPs that all the options to end the presidential vacancy have become null. [Hariri] faced the inevitability of Aoun’s election to save the country from collapse,” Kabbara added.
The agreement that led to Hariri endorsing Aoun’s presidential bid entailed an understanding that Hariri would be appointed prime minister.
MP Oqab Saqr is back
Zahle Future Movement MP Oqab Saqr, who has been out of the country for five and a half years ( since the beginning of the Syrian civil war) , has returned to Lebanon to participate in the session to elect a president.
Saqr will reportedly be under the protection of the intelligence branch from the moment he arrives till he departs . He was quoted as saying : “I am here to back Hariri in his decision to support Aoun’s presidency and I am going to vote for Aoun”
other MPS who were vacationing have been returning to vote at the presidential election on Monday