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This is day 3 of the parliamentary debate. Speaker Nabih Berri resumed the parliamentary session at 10:30 to debate the Ministerial Statement and grant the vote of confidence to the cabinet of PM Saad Hariri

The first to start the debate was FPM MP Ghassan Mukhaiber. He called on the cabinet to work on “granting women the right to pass their nationality [to their children and husbands].”

He also discussed security, saying it is a “priority” and that a defense strategy to protect all citizens must be formed. “We demand putting forward a comprehensive plan to fight terrorism,” he added.

Mokheiber spoke about the issue of Lebanese missing in Syria, stressing the need “to form a fact-finding committee to handle this case.”

“There will be no improvement in Lebanese-Syrian relations without solving the issue of those missing,” he said, adding that “bilateral agreements between Lebanon and Syria should be reassessed.”

Mokheiber called on President Michel Suleiman and Prime Minister Saad Hariri “to form a ministry for human rights.”

He also demanded “an urgent solution to sewage problems and the purification of waste water.”

Hezbollah MP Hussein Moussawi said that he supports Article 9 of the document, which states that Lebanon and Syria should have “brotherly” relations.

He defended the Resistance’s right to exist and said, “It became the sacred right of every threatened village [in Lebanon].”

“Israelis keep on showing their tendencies for violence,” he highlighted, adding, “We all know who is depriving the Lebanese army from military aid,” referring to the US and Israel.

Kataeb Bloc MP Fadi El Haber said There are no countries in the world with 2 armies. I object to article 6 of the policy statement

Amal MP Abdul Majid Saleh: Demanded that political sectarianism should be abolished

FPM MP Abbas Hashem said : Lebanon has now an historic opportunity to build true partnership between its communities.

FPM MP Simon Abi Ramia focused on the issue of Lebanese youth in his statement at the parliament.

Democratic Gathering MP Marwan Hamadeh said : “State building has neither been embodied in the cabinet formation nor in the Ministerial Statement,” and added : “There is no guarantee on who will have the final authority to decide war-and-peace decisions,”

Hamadeh also said he is concerned “that Lebanon would once again be turned into a battlefield for regional conflicts.”

Regarding the Syrian warrants, he urged the ministers of justice, interior and information to take a serious over the questioning of Lebanese officials. Hamadeh also said he “hopes the cabinet will continue to support the Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL).

Lebanese Forces MP George Adwan said : We need Hezbollah’s arms on condition that they be put in the hands of the Lebanese state. We should abide by all international resolutions, particularly 1701. He urged Speaker Nabih Berri to withdraw his call for a national committee to eliminate political sectarianism because this would abolish the equal shares between Christians and Muslims and added that this issue creates “annoyance and tension.”

Kataeb MP Sami Gemayel told Hezbollah MPs: No one wants to eliminate you. No one wants to drop you out of the cabinet, or let Israel defeat you, but you can’t impose your ideas on us. We don’t want you to be outside the state. We reject article 6 because there is no equality in rights between the Lebanese in terms of carrying arms. He added :The Taef accord wasn’t signed under normal circumstances. The Syrian army was in the Lebanese parliament when constitutional amendments were made in 1990.

Concerning the Syrian-Lebanese relations, relations are not based on emotions. We want a perfect relationship for the sake of Lebanon. This relationship with Syria should start after the return of Lebanese detainees from Syrian prisons and the settling of borders between the two countries.

March 14 MP Nayla Tueni said : “I am not afraid of sectarianism, and I call for eliminating it from the souls first,”. She also said “the Ministerial Statement hides a lot of divisions despite its solidity.” She added

“The presence of arms outside the state’s authority will push other parties to arm and will lead Lebanon to a regional confrontation,” she warned.

At 2:30 pm Speaker Berri adjourned the parliamentary session until 6:00 p.m. Thursday

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