Lebanese Defense Minister Samir Moqbel extended the terms of the Army commander, the chief of staff and the head of the Higher Defense Council, for a year despite the objections of Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun.
The move is expected to draw Aoun’s rage .
Moqbel took the decision late Wednesday after the cabinet failed to resolve the controversial issue of the appointment of high-ranking military and security officials.
Army chief of staff Maj. Gen. Walid Salman was due to retire Friday. Army chief Gen. Jean Qahwaji’s term ends on Sept. 23.
Moqbel is expected to make a formal announcement on the decision on Thursday morning.
Aoun, who has been calling for making new appointments, is likely to take escalatory measures following the decision.
FPM sources told al-Akhbar newspaper on Thursday
“The extension will be met with more escalatory measures. Aoun will not back off.”