March 14 condemns Hezbollah over call for STL boycott


Several March 14 leaders attacked Hezbollah chief Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah over his speech last Thursday following Wednesday’s clash between investigators of the the Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL) , and women at a clinic in Hezbollah-controlled al Dhahiya a suburb of Beirut

In his speech Nasrallah called on “every official and every citizen to boycott the work of U.N. investigators” probing the murder of former Lebanese PM Rafik Hariri.

MP Mohammed Kabbara, a member of the Future Movement bloc slammed Nasrallah over his call for boycotiing the Special Tribunal for Lebanon.

“Hezbollah has finally revealed its cards and real goals to openly declare that it wants to topple the Special Tribunal for Lebanon,” said Kabbara.

He described Nasrallah’s statements as a declaration of war on Lebanese who aspire for stability and security.

“The open war Sayyed Nasrallah has declared on international justice puts him in confrontation with the international community and the vast majority of Lebanese, who reject this militia-like approach,” Kabbara added.

Kabbara accused Hezbollah of hiding behind sensitive issues like dignity and honor in twisting the facts about the incident in which men reportedly dressed as women attacked the investigators .

“Nasrallah is speaking of STL’s violation of Lebanon, does he prefer that the lives of people be violated through distorting facts and concealing the criminals who had spilled the blood of the martyrs,” Kabbara said

Kabbara stressed that the Lebanese have had enough …want to know the truth, want justice and want to build the State.”

Former Lebanese president and Phalange Party leader Amin Gemayel said that that Hezbollah chief “is mistaken in his calculations and his current line of action of relying on the party’s weapons”.

Gemayel told Free Lebanon radio that no one in the world can eliminate Hezbollah, stressing the need to reach an understanding over its arms.

This was in reference to Nasrallah’s accusations that STL indictment is targeting the resistance

Gemayel urged President Michel Suleiman to defend the Special Tribunal for Lebanon in line with his presidential oath.

The current developments in Lebanon are a gradual takeover of the system where intellectual and political terrorism is being exercised on the country’s political class, Gemayel added

March 14 MP Nohad al-Mashnouq said that Nasrallah’s latest statements over STL are political positions that are nonbinding for the Lebanese people .

He told Asharq al-Awsat Saturday: “Nasrallah’s position is binding to Hezbollah and its supporters, but it does not bind the state, the majority of the Lebanese population, and the international community.”

“Lebanon is a founding member of the United Nations, therefore, it is bound to its agreements,” Mashnouq added.

“Nasrallah wanted to get ahead of the results of the Saudi-Syrian talks on Lebanon, especially since there is information that Saudi King Abdullah’s advisor, Prince Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah, is likely to head to the Syrian capital within the next 72 hours,” he said.

Mashnouq stressed: “The current government’s ministerial statement, which Hezbollah is a part of, reaffirms Lebanon’s commitment and respect to international law and agreements,” including the formation of the STL.

Labor Minister Boutros Harb said Saturday that Nasrallah’s Thursday statements mean that the his party has withdrawn from the national agreement the government is based on.

“The cabinet might convene next Wednesday,” Harb told Tele Liban television, but added that he did not know what items would be on the session’s agenda. .

The labor minister said it does not make sense for the ministers to meet and not address latest dangerous political developments, in reference to Nasrallah’s recent statements.

Responding to Nasrallah’s statements Lebanese Forces bloc MP Antoine Zahra said on Saturday that Lebanon is officially committed to the UN-probe into the 2005 assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.

He told Future News that March 8’s verbal attacks against the Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL) intend to make the country look like it is unable to fulfill its responsibilities to the international community.

March 14 MP Okab Sakr said on Saturday that “the Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL) was not established to be abolished.”

He told Sawt al-Mada radio station that the parties who want to confront the tribunal “should do so rationally,” a reference to the Hezbollah led March 8 coalition.

Tension escalated in Lebanon following reports that the Special Tribunal for Lebanon will soon issue its indictment into the 2005 assassination of Lebanon’s former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri. Last July, Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah said that the tribunal is “an Israeli project” that will indict Hezbollah members. Nasrallah accused Israel of being behind Hariri’s assassination but refused to provide the evidence to STL to support his claim. Hezbollah and its March 8 allies have been calling for the abolition of STL.

Some leaders are concerned that should the court indict Hezbollah members, it could lead to a Shiite-Sunni strife, but others disagree since Hezbollah and its allies the Syrian backed Palestinian militants are the only armed militias in Lebanon.