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hamadeh 0406Democratic Gathering bloc MP Marwan Hamadeh told Reuters in response to Syrian renewed influence in Lebanon :

“I will not say that the Syrians are back, but they have never departed from Lebanon at the political and intelligence levels ,” he said.

He said Damascus believes Syria’s influence in Lebanon is a trump card in any negotiation launched with the West and Israel.

Hamadeh does not believe that the West wants again to place Lebanon under Syrian rule but stressed “everything in this world is relative, especially with regards to the issues of independence and sovereignty.”

Hamadeh said the Syrian-Lebanese ties have not reached the level of true reconciliation.

Hamadeh miraculously survived an attempted assassination in October 2004 for which Syria was blamed. He was reportedly targeted by the Syrians because they accused him of being behind UN resolution 1559 which called for Syria to pull out of Lebanon and for Palestinian militia and Hezbollah to be disarmed

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