Charbel denies reports of clashing with Nahhas


Interior Minister Marwan Charbel brushed aside on Thursday reports that there was a clash between him and Labor Minister Charbel Nahhas during Wednesday’s cabinet meeting.

“Nothing important happened, ” Charbel told New TV.

MTV reported that Wednesday’s cabinet session witnessed a verbal clash between Nahhas and Charbel during the discussion of police recruitment.

“Nahhas surprised the ministers by demanding the sacking of (Internal Security Forces chief) Maj. Gen. Ashraf Rifi, wondering why Rifi has not been penalized over the issue of the second floor of the telecom ministry building,” MTV said.

According to the TV network, Charbel responded by saying that “this thing should have been done under the tenure of his predecessor (former minister Ziad Baroud) and I won’t allow its occurrence while I’m in office.”

“Charbel almost stormed out of the session, but Mikati and some ministers convinced him to change his mind,” MTV reported

In May 2011, the ISF prevented then caretaker telecom minister Nahhas, several directors at the ministry, and a technical team from entering one of the ministry’s buildings at the Adlieh area in Beirut.

At the time Nahhas described the incident as a “coup” led by the ISF.

The incident eventually led to the resignation of then caretaker interior minister Baroud, who said he had not been aware of Rifi’s actions.