Lebanon MP: Citizens should reject arms that ‘occupy Beirut’


March 14 MP Nohad al-Mashnouq told LBCI television on Sunday that Beirut residents should take to the streets to express their rejection of Tuesday’s Borj Abi Haidar clashes and should call for confiscating the arms that “occupy Beirut.”

His comments come after the clash that took place last Tuesday night in the Beirut neighborhood of Borj Abi Haidar between supporters of the pro-Syrian Association of Islamic Charitable Projects—also known as Al-Ahbash—and the Iranian backed Hezbollah militants , leading to the death of three people, including Hezbollah official Mohammad Fawwaz, his body guard and an Al-Ahbash member who is the son of a Beirut Mukhtar.

“Talks about conspiracies are unacceptable,” Mashnouq said, adding that arms used by parties in Beirut insulted the people of all sects.

Resistance arms are something else and they should continue to be used against Israel, the MP also said, criticizing the Defense Ministry’s Tuesday decision to suspend permits to carry firearms in Lebanon since the weapons used in the clashes were most likely not licensed.

The cabinet assigned the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) to protect citizens and the Lebanese command must take responsibility, Mashnouq said, adding that the LAF and the security forces did not fulfill their duties.

The MP rejected Progressive Socialist Party leader MP Walid Jumblatt’s proposal to form neighborhood security watch committees,saying that such talks remind him of the 1975 civil war.