Sayyed calls for abolishing Taef and turning Lebanon into a federal state

jamil sayyed

jamil sayyedFormer head of Lebanon’s Sureté Générale or Lebanese General Security Directorate Jamil al-Sayyed is calling for abolishing the Taif accord and to turn Lebanon into a federal state, according to a report by the Lebanese Daily Star newspaper.

“The current crises taking place in Lebanon – the last of which is failure to elect a new president after failing to form a government for nearly a year without foreign intervention, and after the sectarian power struggle and power-sharing struggle around various areas in the state – prove that the Constitution of Taef, which was implemented during the Syrian presence [in Lebanon ] between 1990- 2005, is non-applicable unless there is a guardianship or external or regional consensus,” Sayyed was quoted as saying in a statement.

Sayyed , a close ally of the Syrian regime and Hezbollah praised the Syrian tutelage by claiming that state institutions functioned better during the Syrian military presence

“Whether we like it or not … we must recognize that state institutions and [political] officials did function during the Syrian presence,” he added.

However, after the end of the Syrian tutelage in 2005, Lebanon “practically turned into a federal, sectarian state built on corruption and division on the one hand, while claiming purity and unity on the other.” He said

Sayyed accused political leaders of using a policy to divide Lebanese in order to have control over them.

“Since it is impossible to unite the Lebanese over a revolution or a coup against this rotten political system … maybe it is time to stop this farce … and call for the amendment of the Constitution to turn Lebanon formally into a federal state,” he suggested.

Sayyed believes a federal state is likely to “create a positive and healthy competition within each sect.”

Lebanon is already a federal state

lebanon sectarian mapAccording to observers Lebanon is being run as a federal state already and not a unitary state .

A unitary state by definition is a state governed as one single unit in which the central government is supreme and any administrative divisions (subnational units) exercise only powers that their central government chooses to delegate, but in Lebanon the various sects acts as independent units within a federation.

One observer said” take Hezbollah for instance . It almost governs the predominately Shiite areas of Lebanon. Has its own militia and makes war and peace decisions for Lebanon. Despite the fact that the Lebanese politicians adopted the Baabda declaration which calls for distancing Lebanon from the Syrian conflict , Hezbollah decided on orders from Iran to send tens of thousands of its fighters to Syria to help the Syrian regime in crushing the Syrian revolution .”

The observer added : “Hezbollah has been obstructing the function of every institution . Who obstructed the formation of a Lebanese government for over a year ? Who is now preventing the election of a Lebanese president ?”

The observer added: “When Sayyed stepped off his plane from Paris at the Beirut International Airport on September 18,2010 he was welcomed by Hezbollah gunmen, who drove onto the runway in vehicles without license plates and took him to the airport’s VIP lounge. Although he no longer held an official position in the Lebanese government, Sayyed who spent four years in jail on suspicion of involvement in the 2005 assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri before being released for lack of evidence in 2009 , held a press conference in the Foreign Ministry’s lounge, designated for heads of state and ministers. Then he was escorted home by the same Hezbollah gunmen.

The observer added: “Neither the Ministry of Foreign Affairs nor the Ministry of Interior was asked for permission for the gunmen to have access to the airport runway and the VIP lounge. But nobody moved a finger to stop them because Hezbollah is better armed that the state” .